Trinity Health sues anesthesia provider embroiled in rate disputes with big payers — 4 details

Trinity Health is suing Anesthesia Associates of Ann Arbor (Mich.) — its exclusive anesthesia provider — in Michigan federal court.

Four things to know:

1. Anesthesia Associates of Ann Arbor, also known as A4, anchors the anesthesia platform of Siromed Physician Services, a South Florida platform company also named as a defendant in the lawsuit. A4 provides anesthesia services at six Trinity hospitals.

2. Trinity alleges it could lose patients and incur significant administrative expenses because of rate disputes between A4 and several insurers. The Livonia, Mich.-based health system also claims the rate disputes could hike patients' out-of-pocket costs.

3. A4 and Siromed "are using non-compete clauses to interfere with the ability of their more than 100 anesthesiologists to continue to treat patients at the hospitals they serve" and to prevent Trinity from defending itself against agreement breaches, the lawsuit claims.

4. A4 has terminated its contracts with Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan and Priority Health, and sent termination notices to Aetna and its affiliate Cofinity. A4 breached its agreements with Trinity — "which require that A4 remain in network with these payors so that [Trinity] patients are fully covered … when they obtain services" — by taking those actions, Trinity said.

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