KGH Statement Regarding Group Health Contract Negotiations

Our contract with Group Health was slated to expire on December 31, 2010. In good faith, we have continued to negotiate extending this contract without any increase in payment to the hospital and providers. In fact, the contract has been extended four times since December 31, 2010.

We believed there was significant progress being made in these negotiations in order to secure a new three-year contract by the end of this year. We believed we were close to reaching this mutually beneficial agreement until late last week, when we were shocked and disappointed to hear that Group Health made a unilateral decision to suspend our good faith negotiations. Needless to say, we cannot understand why Group Health would deny access for care to our hospital and providers.

KGH did not walk away from the negotiating table and is willing to negotiate to bring this to resolution. We have valued our partnership with Group Health and appreciate the opportunity to serve their members. As always, we continue to promote a choice for health care services in the Tri-Cities.