SEANC calls on UNC Hospitals to support Clear Pricing Project

Jun 27, 2019

RALEIGH – The State Employees Association of North Carolina today called on UNC Hospitals to support the Clear Pricing Project and sign a contract to join the North Carolina State Health Plan Network.

The Clear Pricing Project will save taxpayers more than $250 million and State Health Plan members more than $50 million in out-of-pocket costs by pegging reimbursement to Medicare rates plus a profit margin.

SEANC’s request comes in the wake of a news report revealing the state-owned hospital system used public funds to support a dark money group aimed at stopping the Clear Pricing Project. WBTV in Charlotte reported on Monday that UNC Hospitals paid $58,633 to the N.C. Healthcare Association to support Partners for Innovation in Health Care, a group committed to stopping the State Treasurer from implementing the Clear Pricing Project.

“As state employees, workers at UNC Hospitals are barred from participating in political activities while on the job, and yet here is a case of their own employer using taxpayer money to act in a political manner against them,” said SEANC President Jimmy Davis. 

“We are outraged by UNC Hospitals’ gross mismanagement of taxpayer dollars,” SEANC Executive Director Robert Broome said. “The UNC hospital system is not only playing politics with health care coverage for more than 720,000 public servants, retirees and their families, but also jeopardizing access to affordable care for their own employees.”

Thousands of providers have already signed on to accept the new network, including ECU Physicians, the medical practice of the Brody School of Medicine at East Carolina University. 

“UNC Hospitals has the opportunity to do the right thing now by following ECU Physicians’ example to stand with their own employees and North Carolina’s public servants by signing on to the Clear Pricing Project today,” continued Broome.

SEANC leaders have made multiple attempts to contact UNC Hospitals President Gary Park and UNC Health Care CEO Wesley Burks over the past six weeks. Both executives have ignored requests to discuss the Clear Pricing Project and the future of their own employees’ health care. If UNC Hospitals does not join the network, it will mean that UNC System employees who work in and around UNC facilities could be charged out-of-network rates.