Kaiser Permanente Confronts Massive Losses

New president committed to more ‘efficient, member-focused’ approach

Kaiser Permanente Colorado, the largest insurer in the state, says skyrocketing hospital prices are the main reason it has recorded losses of $65 million in the last three years, forcing a top-to-bottom review of operations that will herald a more confrontational approach with hospitals.

Ron Vance, Kaiser’s president of Colorado operations, would not rule out filing antitrust lawsuits against those Colorado hospitals he contends have “refused to enter into reasonable contracts” with Kaiser.

“We’re evaluating all of our options,” Vance said when asked about the potential for litigation that would accuse those hospitals of engaging in noncompetitive practices that increase prices for patients. “Is that on the table? Everything is on the table. Is that something that could be considered? It could be.”

“It’s no secret that this organization has had financial challenges over the last few years, and we are embarking on a journey to be even more member-focused than we are today and to become more efficient in the way we do business and to really try to address the affordability issue.”

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