Patient FAQs

Is Northwest Healthcare out of network with UnitedHealthcare?

No, not at this time. However, we face the real possibility that Northwest Healthcare facilities, urgent care, and physicians will be forced out of United’s network on May 1, 2017.

What is happening between Northwest Healthcare and UnitedHealthcare?

Despite our health system offering significant compromise, United has refused to negotiate on anything less than a 25% cut in what they pay us for the care we provide. This kind of demand threatens our ability to provide the same level of services and resources our patients have come to expect from Northwest Healthcare.

We have a responsibility to our patients – the thousands of people with United insurance who entrust us with their care – to keep doing everything we can reasonably do to stay in United’s network. The bottom line is that we need United to make an effort to reach a fair, reasonable agreement.

Who is Affected?

If United forces us out of its network, the following Northwest Healthcare locations and affiliated providers will be affected:

I have a UnitedHealthcare insurance plan. What does this mean for me?

We face the real possibility that Northwest Healthcare facilities, urgent care, and physicians will be forced out of United’s network on May 1, 2017. Here’s what that means for you:

  • Continuity of Care. Certain patients may qualify for Continuity of Care benefits for a period of time after United’s proposed termination date, if they need ongoing treatment, are pregnant, or if they have a previously-scheduled procedure. Call the customer service phone number on the back of your United health insurance card to find out if you qualify. If you qualify, download the Continuity of Care form and complete with your Northwest Healthcare provider.
  • Emergency Care. In the event of an emergency, you should always go to the nearest emergency room. That’s the one place United cannot deny you from receiving healthcare services or impose a financial burden on you.
  • Out-of-Network Care. United members’ access to Northwest Healthcare will vary based on the benefits included in your specific health insurance plan. If your health insurance plan has out-of-network benefits, you may still access Northwest Healthcare. Call the number on the back of your health insurance card to find out what your out-of-pocket costs may be.

What can I do to protect my in-network access to my Northwest Healthcare providers?

  • Call United Today. Call the number on the back of your health insurance card and demand United work with us to protect your in-network access to Northwest Healthcare providers.
  • Apply for Continuity of Care. Certain patients may qualify for Continuity of Care benefits for a period of time after United’s proposed termination date, if they need ongoing treatment, are pregnant, or if they have a previously-scheduled procedure. Call the customer service phone number on the back of your United health insurance card to find out if you qualify. If you qualify, download the Continuity of Care form and complete with your Northwest Healthcare provider.

If you have health insurance through your employer:

  • Talk to Your Employer. Ask your employer to explore other health insurance options that have our providers in network. We are in network with all other major health plans. If you have options, consider switching to a health plan that guarantees your in-network access to all our providers.

If you have a UnitedHealthcare Medicare Advantage health plan:

  • Call CMS and request a Special Open Enrollment Period so you can switch plans. If you have a United Medicare Advantage health plan, The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services needs to hear from you. Contact CMS today at (800) 633-4227 to switch health plans to one in which Northwest Healthcare’s facilities and physicians are in-network and request a complaint be opened.
  • Change Your Health Plan. There are special circumstances that might allow you to enroll in a different Medicare Advantage health plan to maintain your in-network access to Northwest Healthcare.

Are UnitedHealthcare Supplement health plans affected by the termination?

No. If you have Original Medicare and have a United supplemental health plan (also known as a MediGap health plan), you are not impacted by these negotiations.

Are Tricare members affected by the termination?

No. Tricare members are not impacted by these negotiations. Tricare members can continue to receive care with their Northwest Healthcare provider like they always have

What Northwest Healthcare locations are affected by the termination?

The contract termination includes the following locations and affiliated providers:

What health plans are included in the termination?

UnitedHealthcare commercial (if you have health insurance through your employer), Medicare Advantage, and Medicaid (AHCCCS) health plans are affected by this contract termination.

What if I have an emergency? Can I visit the Emergency Room?

In the event of an emergency, patients should always go to the nearest emergency room. That’s the one place United cannot deny you from receiving healthcare services or impose a financial burden. Therefore, your access to emergency care at Northwest Medical Center, Oro Valley Hospital and Northwest Emergency Center Vail is not impacted, regardless of our network status with United.

What if I have a doctor’s appointment or elective procedure scheduled on or after May 1, 2017?

United members’ access to Northwest Healthcare will vary based on the benefits included in your specific health insurance plan. To understand your out-of-network benefits, please call the number on the back of your insurance card or speak to your employer.

Certain patients may qualify for Continuity of Care benefits for a period of time after United’s proposed termination date, if they need ongoing treatment, are pregnant, or if they have a previously-scheduled procedure. Call the customer service phone number on the back of your United health insurance card to find out if you qualify. If you qualify, download the Continuity of Care form and complete with your Northwest Healthcare provider.

I have a chronic condition, am pregnant or receive regular treatments. What will happen if you do not reach an agreement?

United members’ access to Northwest Healthcare will vary based on the benefits included in your specific health insurance plan. To understand your out-of-network benefits, please call the number on the back of your insurance card or speak to your employer.

Certain patients may qualify for Continuity of Care benefits for a period of time after United’s proposed termination date, if they need ongoing treatment, are pregnant, or if they have a previously-scheduled procedure. Call the customer service phone number on the back of your United health insurance card to find out if you qualify. If you qualify, download the Continuity of Care form and complete with your Northwest Healthcare provider.

What does my United health insurance plan cover if Northwest Healthcare goes out of network?

United members’ access to Northwest Healthcare will vary based on the benefits included in your specific health insurance plan. To understand your out-of-network benefits, please call United at the number on the back of your health insurance card.

What is the last day I can obtain in-network services at Northwest Healthcare?

Unless United decides to engage in discussions with us, the last day patients with United health insurance will be able to receive in-network healthcare service at Northwest Healthcare April 30, 2017.