Sparrow Requests Gift from Blue Cross

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There was another newspaper ad in the Lansing State Journal. This time, Sparrow Hospital is asking Blue Cross Blue Shield for a holiday gift - a resolution to the contract talks that seem to be going nowhere.

Blue Cross Blue Shield's offices were closed on Christmas Day, but representatives said the ball is in Sparrow's court if hospital officials want the contract conflict to be settled by the Dec. 31 deadline.

Officials from the insurance company said they would agree to extending the contract with the hospital for at least 90 days and paying the hospital at a rate three percent higher than what they currently pay. They said extending the contract would allow both groups to have more time to negotiate.

Meanwhile, Sparrow officials say the offers they have seen from the insurance company are not fair. Officials say they're looking for a 9.4 percent increase in the payments they receive from the insurance company.

Blue Cross Blue Shield officials will be back in the office Thursday.