For readers of this blog, business law and contract disputes are often a topic. Though, disputes between healthcare companies are rare. In this case though, the dispute between UnitedHealthcare and Prisma Health has shown all business owners, contract disputes can happen between anyone.
The contract negotiations go south
The services contract between UnitedHealthcare and Prisma Health was set to expire at the end of this year. The consequences of not being able to craft a deal was that UnitedHealthcare users, both their customers and employees, could no longer use Prisma Health healthcare facilities or providers as in-network, effectively making this entire network out of reach for UnitedHealthcare users. There were various areas of disagreement, but the main issues related to reimbursement rates for healthcare services provided to UnitedHealthcare users. For most of the year, it looked like the two parties were not going to find a solution, but that changed this week.
While the specific of their new contract have not been released publicly, which is often the case for business contracts, the two parties have reached an agreement. This means that UnitedHealthcare users can use Prisma Health facilities and service providers for years. In addition, the deal also allows United Behavioral Health, Spectera Eyecare Network and the Veteran Affairs Community Care Network to use Prisma Health’s facilities and physicians.
Parties of contract disputes
In practice, a contract dispute can occur between any business and any contracted party. This could be employees of the company itself, a vendor the company uses, internal business partners, external business partners, etc. Disputes can even occur over the business documents that created the business. This is why it is so important to devote the right amount of resources from the very beginning of a business to ensure litigation and contractual issues are as mitigated as possible.
Consequences of contract disputes
Most contract disputes have monetary consequences, which can be minor to severe. In the worst cases, the consequences are the ending of one’s business, or a monetary award so high that it effectively ends a business. In either event, the key to mitigation is early involvement for Lexington and Louisville, Kentucky, business owners and taking disputes seriously before they escalate and become more severe.