“Our members are
what we’re here for.

MENASHA, WI (January 8, 2016) – Network Health met with ThedaCare on Thursday, January 7, 2016 in an effort to put into place an extension of ThedaCare’s contract for Network Health members through at least December 31, 2016. We are still in discussions with ThedaCare, working to come to an agreement as quickly as possible, and we do not intend to disrupt our members’ health care. Despite recent ThedaCare statements, Network Health met with ThedaCare with the goal of putting member needs first and negotiating an extension to best serve our mutual customers.

Our goal continues to be a long-term relationship that will ensure affordability and quality health care for our customers now and in the future.

Though we do not have an outcome to announce yet, our efforts continue to be focused on the needs of our members. Over the past five years, Network Health has built many broad and complex connections with ThedaCare. As one can imagine, a negotiation of this nature takes time, is not simple or to be taken lightly and because of that we don’t want to cause unnecessary concern for our members before there is a final outcome to share. 

Response to ThedaCare December 29 and January 8 Letters to the Community

ThedaCare Statement on December 29“A few weeks ago ThedaCare announced our termination of our Network Health Plan contract. Since then many people have contacted us with questions. Our decision also caused some angst for some of you. That was not our intent.”

On December 11, we heard from our agents, and then later in the day received notification from ThedaCare of their intention to terminate our relationship as of July 31, 2016.

We’ve asked ThedaCare to stop using the media to cause unnecessary concern for our members and their patients. Despite our interests to keep our mutual customers out of the middle, they’ve continued that approach.

Contract negotiations between providers and insurance companies are routine throughout every year, and they all take time, but typically they are not shared with the media because a lot can change before a final agreement is reached.

ThedaCare Statement on December 29"An extension would allow Network Health Plan members to continue to see ThedaCare doctors through Dec. 31, 2016 – maintaining their current coverage, unchanged.”

We have a mutual interest in extending the contract to best serve the community. Our goal continues to be a long-term relationship that will ensure affordability and quality health care for our customers now and in the future.

ThedaCare Statement on December 29"This exit was not a surprise to Network Health Plan."

Unfortunately, Network Health didn’t receive the notification from ThedaCare about their intention to end their relationship with us until December 11. On December 11, we heard from our agents, and then later in the day received notification from ThedaCare of their intention to terminate our relationship as of July 31, 2016.

We’re disappointed ThedaCare made a public announcement to terminate their contract before agreeing to meet with us, but we can assure members that we’re working to ensure the least disruption to your health care and that’s why it’s taking some time.

ThedaCare Statement on December 29"An extension, however, is a way forward. It would mean current plans that include ThedaCare providers and services would remain in effect for all of 2016."

We agree. Network Health met with ThedaCare on Thursday, January 7, 2016 in an effort to put into place an extension of ThedaCare’s contract for Network Health members through at least December 31, 2016.

ThedaCare Statement on December 29"If you are a Network Health Plan member who sees ThedaCare doctors, you don’t need to do anything right now."

We agree.

ThedaCare Statement on December 29"If you are offered insurance through your employer and if Network Health declines the extension, talk to your HR department. Network Health is required to cover your ThedaCare primary care doctor and specialists for a certain length of time."

If an extension is not agreed to, Network Health will be reaching out to members with a formal transition process specific to your individual health care needs. Because each member’s needs can be different, it’s important for us to properly prepare a personalized plan for each person who may be impacted.

ThedaCare Statement on December 29"If you are a Medicare Advantage plan member and if Network Health declines the extension and your coverage ends mid-year, please talk with your insurance agent immediately to learn about your options. For example, from Jan. 1-Feb. 14, 2016 you can enroll in traditional Medicare, as well as Medicare Part D prescription drug coverage. Next fall, during open enrollment, you can enroll in a new Medicare Advantage plan that allows you to continue receiving high quality of care from ThedaCare."

It is important to talk to an agent before making any changes outside of the Medicare annual enrollment period. Based upon each person’s individual situation, certain changes may or may not be beneficial.

ThedaCare Statement on January 8 - "We are extremely disappointed and surprised that Network Health Plan leaders were non-committal in our meeting Thursday regarding a contract extension through Dec. 31, 2016.”

Network Health met with ThedaCare on Thursday in an effort to put into place an extension of ThedaCare’s contract for Network Health members through at least December 31, 2016. Our goal continues to be a long-term relationship that will ensure affordability and quality health care for our customers now and in the future.

Unfortunately, all provider contract agreements take time, because there are many complicated details that need to be discussed, considered and agreed to.

Over the past five years, we’ve also built many deep connections with ThedaCare to serve our mutual customers. This and many other details need to be considered for both our Medicare and commercial customers and each of the northeast counties we serve.

We not only want to ensure our members can continue to receive the health care they signed up for, we’re interested in long-term provider relationships that will ensure affordability and quality health care to serve our community now and in the future.

Contract negotiations between providers and insurance companies are routine throughout every year, and they all take time, but typically they are not shared with the media because a lot can change before a final agreement is reached.

We’re working to come to an agreement as quickly as possible, and as soon as we have news to share, our members and partners will be the first to know.

ThedaCare Statement on December 29"We had been in negotiations with Network Health for an extended period of time. We sought reasonable terms that addressed a range of concerns similar to those other insurers have agreed to."

ThedaCare Statement on January 8 - "ThedaCare has had an offer on the table for more than a year to extend our contract with Network Health Plan. We urged Network Health Plan to meet earlier on this matter, but they requested a week’s delay. Throughout, we negotiated in good faith, desiring to extend within the existing terms of the contract."

When we renewed our commitment with ThedaCare earlier in 2015, we confirmed our intention to negotiate an agreement with ThedaCare ACO by the end of 2015. Network Health made repeated attempts to initiate those negotiations. ThedaCare was not responsive to our requests.

On December 11, we heard from our agents, and then later in the day received notification from ThedaCare of their intention to terminate our relationship as of July 31, 2016.

Since then, we’ve been looking at all the options available to us because we have no intention to disrupt our member’s care. Our goal continues to be a long-term relationship that will ensure affordability and quality health care for our customers now and in the future.

ThedaCare Statement on January 8"Additionally, based on public and private comments Network Health Plan recently made about accepting ThedaCare’s offer, there was reason to believe we would be announcing an extension – or at the very least, a definitive no. Instead, the communities we serve are facing uncertainty."

Our goal is to voice the needs of our members, and we do not intend to disrupt our members’ health care or the community. This is taking some time, but our priorities remain the same as they have for more than 33 years—to continue to serve our local customers by providing exceptional service and affordable, quality health insurance that puts their needs first.

Over the past five years, we’ve also built many deep connections with ThedaCare to serve our mutual customers. This and many other details need to be considered for both our Medicare and commercial customers and each of the northeast counties we serve.

We not only want to ensure our members can continue to receive the health care they signed up for, we’re interested in long-term provider relationships that will ensure affordability and quality health care to serve our community now and in the future.

Contract negotiations with our different providers are routine throughout every year, and they all take time, but typically they are not shared with the media because a lot can change before a final agreement is reached. It’s most important to us that the agreement is in the best interests of our members.

ThedaCare Statement on January 8"Unlike ThedaCare, which is locally owned and makes decisions locally, ownership of Network Health Plan has moved outside northeast Wisconsin, even as far as St. Louis."

Network Health is a locally owned, Wisconsin-based company-accountable to our customers, not shareholders. For more than 33 years, we’ve offered a different kind of health insurance that puts customers first. Founded in 1982 by a group of physicians, Network Health has served northeast Wisconsin residents for over 33 years. In 1998 Network Health System merged with Affinity Health System. In 2001, Network Health was established as a wholly owned subsidiary. In 2012, Ministry Health Care became the sole sponsor of Affinity Health System and Network Health. In 2013, Ascension Health became the sole corporate member of Ministry Health Care. In 2014, Network Health became co-owned by Ministry Health Care (sponsored by Ascension based in St. Louis) and Froedtert Health. Operations and management of Network Health is based in Menasha, Wisconsin. Network Health’s full history can be viewed in our media kit.

ThedaCare Statement on January 8"In this situation, Network Health Plan has granted contract extensions to three organizations, but not to other local employers and Medicare Advantage members. The reasons for this are puzzling."

Although we can assume the identities of two organizations, we are unclear about the third. Those negotiations are commonly private and confidential.

We are still in discussions with ThedaCare, working to come to an agreement as quickly as possible for what’s in the best interests of all of our members.

ThedaCare Statement on January 8"We are working with other payers who meet our expectations for quality and service."

When it comes to overall provider satisfaction, Network Health easily outperforms the competition. The area’s doctors and specialists rate Network Health well above other plans.

    • On overall provider satisfaction, Network Health’s providers rate us at 84.2 percent, while the closest competing carrier is rated 55.3 percent.
    • 93.2 percent of doctors and specialists would recommend Network Health.

ThedaCare Statement on January 8"As part of the fabric of the communities we serve, we are committed to being forthright and transparent with you throughout the negotiation process."

We’ve asked ThedaCare to stop using the media to cause unnecessary concern for our members and their patients. We understand it has caused a lot of worry for our members. Despite our interests to keep our mutual customers out of the middle, they’ve continued that approach.

Contract negotiations with our different providers are routine throughout every year, and they all take time. It’s unfortunate ThedaCare made a public announcement to terminate their contract before agreeing to meet with us. We don’t intend to disrupt our member’s health care and that’s why it’s taking some time. It’s most important to us that the agreement is in the best interests of all of our members.