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Published: Wednesday, January 03, 2018 @ 12:01 PM
Premier Health and UnitedHealthcare have agreed to a new contract, ending a seven-month dispute that affected nearly 200,000 health insurance policy holders in the region.
The two companies had been unable to reach a new contract deal last May and the dispute dragged on through the end of 2017, leaving patients with Premier doctors and UHC insurance scrambling to either find a new doctor, switch insurers or pay more for out-of-network care.
The new contract deal was announced Tuesday and was effective starting Jan. 1.
Here’s what the agreement mean for you:
If you got out-of-network care during the contract dispute:
The status of those health care bills likely doesn’t change, since the care was delivered while Premier and UHC didn’t have a contract.
A temporary agreement let patients pay with $25 co-pays for primary care.
Also, if you got out-of-network care, you’re not alone. Already by August, more than 1,000 patients with UnitedHealthcare went to a Premier emergency room, according to the health network. While patients weren’t typically responsible for the full bill, the final bills were likely higher than what it would be for in-network care.
If your company stayed with UnitedHealthcare during open enrollment season:
Companies had to make tough decisions over whether to stick with Unitedhealthcare for 2018, which may have been the best choice for their bottom line but also put employees with Premier doctors in a bind.
For those employers that stuck with UnitedHealthcare, the contract deal solidifies that it was a good decision to stay, said Scott McGohan, CEO of McGohan Brabender, a Dayton-area employee benefits broker.
McGohan said employers with UnitedHealthcare coverage want to run their business, they don’t want to manage problems that had been created for their employees their by the dispute.
“For employers that have UnitedHealthcare, what this does is it doesn’t disrupt their workforce,” he said.
If you already switched insurance companies:
You have the insurance coverage for all of 2018 unless you have a major life event.
If you already switched doctors:
If you switch back to Premier, you’ll be back in-network for UnitedHealthcare.
If you have a Medicare Advantage plan managed by UHC:
Your health care coverage should not have been interrupted if you had UHC-managed Medicare Advantage last year and this year. A temporary deal extended coverage until Jan. 1, which is when the new contract went in place.
If you live in Miami County and have UnitedHealthcare:
You have a shorter drive to get in-network care now that Premier-affiliated Upper Valley Medical Center near Troy, the only hospital in the county, is back in-network.
Miami County Commissioner John Evans said it was a difficult time for the residents during the contract dispute and the county government had ended up switching insurers from UHC to Medical Mutual in case the dispute carried on into 2018.
Being out-of-network also affected Upper Valley from a business standpoint. It’s one of the largest employers and economic forces in the county.
Published: Tuesday, March 20, 2018 @ 2:06 AM
FAIRFIELD — UPDATE @ 5:50 a.m: About 35 people were displaced and two dozen apartment units were damaged after a fire occurred at an apartment complex in Fairfield Tuesday morning, according to our partners at WCPO.
OTHER LOCAL NEWS: Cause of Xenia house fire on Glen Kegley Drive under investigation
Crews responded to Camelot East Apartments in the 1400 block of Sherwood Drive around 12:30 a.m. after a resident smelled something burning and found a fire in the third floor utility room.
A total of 24 units were impacted, 12 as a result of the fire, and the other 12 due to utilities in the complex being shut off, according to the American Red Cross, who assisted the displaced residents.
Fairfield firefighters worked to control the heavy fire for over 2 hours with assistance from Forest Park and Colerain Township Fire Departments.
Crews responded to the 1400 block of Sherwood Drive on fire reportedly coming from the third floor of an apartment building Tuesday morning, according to Fairfield police.
Initial reports indicate smoke and flames were showing around 12:25 a.m., prompting crews to evacuate the building.
We will continue to update this story as additional details become available.
Published: Tuesday, March 20, 2018 @ 3:57 AM
Updated: Tuesday, March 20, 2018 @ 6:57 AM
— QUICK-LOOK FORECAST
TUESDAY: A Winter Weather Advisory has been issued for Montgomery and Preble counties until 11 a.m. Tuesday due to freezing rain in the area.
Some snow showers and freezing rain have made their way up from the south with temperatures being at or below freezing for the morning, said Storm Center 7 Meteorologist Kirstie Zontini.
Rain and freezing rain will mix through the morning with the possibility of a light ice accumulation that could develop on elevated surfaces, bridges, and overpasses before and around sunrise.
“Drivers should take their time if they are out before the sun comes up,” Zontini said.
Temperatures improve during the day by climbing to a high the low 40s after sunrise with some dry time expected in the middle of the day.
Moisture brings rain showers back towards late afternoon with cold air transitioning everyone to snow for evening hours between 7 and 9 p.m. Expect snow to accumulate through the night. Winds will gust around 30 mph this afternoon and tonight, so drivers should watch for slick roads and poor visibility as a result.
WEDNESDAY: A messy morning commute is expected with temperatures in the 20s and snow still falling. Winds will still gust around 30 mph, so blowing, drifting, and poor visibility are possible. Snow will taper off into the afternoon as moisture shifts east, but overall most of the Miami Valley will end up with around 2 to 4 inches of snow with some areas seeing closer to 5 inches. It’ll be breezy for the rest of the day with mostly cloudy skies and highs in the mid-30s. Chilly temperatures overnight drop to the low 20s.
THURSDAY: Refreeze or lingering snowy roads are possible early since temperatures will be in the low 20s. However, they’ll be big improvements through the day as sunshine returns and temperatures peak in the low 40s. Expect it to be dry throughout the entire day.
FRIDAY: A sunny start with clouds increasing through the day. Highs will peak in the mid-40s as passing showers develop overnight.
SATURDAY: Morning temperatures starting in the upper 20s could mean a brief wintry mix. Rain showers through the afternoon may end as wet snow. Highs reach in the low 40s.
Published: Tuesday, March 20, 2018 @ 7:01 AM
But the city of Dayton’s new mascot, Captain Customer Service, looks to be a big cheerleader for customer service “all-stars” within the government organization.
Captain Customer Service will be called to help honor and highlight the work of people who display or embody the city’s core values of strong customer service, said Tammi Clements, Dayton’s deputy city manager.
“We hope that will bring a little more attention to the things we’re trying to do,” she said.
Captain Customer Service will be played by Andrew Estevez, the TV production specialist for the city’s office of communications and public affairs.
Estevez may don a cape and other superhero garb.
His main duty will be to recognize employees for “outstanding” customer service, which is the point of the city’s Dayton Delivers all stars program.
Government agencies for years have turned to some quirky mascots to promote their initiatives. There’s Deputy Drip, who raises awareness about water conservation in Nevada and Twisty the LED light bulb in Seattle.
Sports teams, of course, have mascots, including local fan favorites Heater, Gem and Roofman of the Dayton Dragons.
Dayton city commissioners praised plans for the new mascot at a special meeting last week. Dayton Mayor Nan Whaley said, “I like this guy: I think it’s supposed to be fun, and this is fun.”
Published: Tuesday, March 20, 2018 @ 5:32 AM
MORAINE — UPDATE @ 5:58 a.m: The Montgomery County Coroner been requested to Fuyao Glass America, Inc. in Moraine after a reported forklift accident occurred Tuesday morning.
Initial reports indicate the incident was dispatched around 5:20 a.m. to 2801 W. Stroop Road with one person reportedly unresponsive.
Additional details have not been released.
Crews are responding to Fuyao Glass America, Inc. in Moraine on reports of an accident involving a forklift.
The incident was dispatched around 5:20 a.m. at the business located at 2801 W. Stroop Road, per initial reports.