AmeriHealth Caritas Patient Answers

AmeriHealth Caritas Threatens to Remove Mercy Health Network From its Network

Starting July 1, 2017, patients with AmeriHealth Caritas Medicaid health plans may not be able to visit Mercy Health Network (MHN) doctors, hospitals and clinics for non-emergency services. This includes Covenant ClinicCovenant Medical CenterSartori Memorial Hospital, and Mercy Hospital in Oelwein. AmeriHealth Caritas plans to remove us from its network if we cannot agree to a new contract. This concerns us because it will impact the lives of our patients who choose MHN doctors, hospitals and clinics for their care.

The current contract was agreed to by both organizations less than a year ago. Now, AmeriHealth Caritas is threatening to end our three-year contract, demanding payment cuts. This is both shocking and disappointing.

We have built our network of providers to offer some of the most coordinated care possible for our patients. If AmeriHealth decides to remove us from its network, its 220,000 members will no longer have access to our 13 hospitals, 200 clinics and more than 2,000 doctors across the state. Our goal is to make sure this doesn’t happen and that our patients can continue to visit the doctors they know and trust.

5 Things AmeriHealth Caritas Patients Should Know

1. We are committed to our patients. We care about your health and the health of your family. Our teams are working hard so you can keep seeing your trusted doctors and nurses

2. There is no immediate change. You can continue to visit our doctors and facilities until July 1, 2017, without interruption. Your in-network access will only change if we cannot agree on a new contract. If you have an appointment or procedure scheduled on or after July 1, 2017, call your doctor’s office to see if you can move your appointment prior to July 1.

3. You can choose a new Medicaid plan. If a new deal is not reached, you can choose a new plan so you can keep visiting our doctors, hospitals and clinics. You should receive a letter from AmeriHealth Caritas by June 1, if we have not reached a deal. Once you receive the letter, you will have until June 16 to choose a new plan that will take effect July 1, 2017.

We participate with the other two Iowa Medicaid Managed Care plans. Changing to one these plans means you can continue visiting our doctors and facilities without interruption.

To choose a new plan, call Iowa Medicaid Member Services at (800) 338-8366 Monday-Friday 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. or email

Certain patients may be able to change plans now. If you are still within your 60-day Annual Enrollment Period, you can choose a new plan now. Annual Enrollment Periods are listed in your Annual Enrollment Letter found in your Iowa Medicaid Annual Enrollment packet. Or, if you enrolled in an AmeriHealth Caritas plan within the last 90 days, you can choose a new plan now.

4. You will always have access to emergency services. Even if a new deal is not reached and we’re not in network with AmeriHealth Caritas, you will always have access to our emergency rooms. If you have a medical emergency, you should always go to the nearest emergency room.

5. We are here to help. If you have questions, call us at (800) 203-9165.