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News Brief

Sept. 18, 2014LINCOLN, Neb. |  By: AP

Major Nebraska Health Insurer Contracts Expire

A major Nebraska health insurer remains unable to come to terms with one of the state's biggest medical networks, so thousands of people are either facing significantly higher costs or changing doctors.

No talks have been held since the contract between Blue Cross Blue Shield of Nebraska and Catholic Health Initiatives expired Sept. 1.

The expired contract covered all CHI Health hospitals in Omaha, Schuyler and Plainview.

It also includes hospitals in Lincoln, Grand Island, Kearney and Nebraska City affiliated with Catholic Health Initiatives.

Blue Cross says CHI Health, which used to be Alegent Creighton Health, routinely charges 10 - 30 percent more than other Omaha hospitals.

CHI Health says those figures are misleading and its total cost of treatment is lower even if certain services cost more.