CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Charleston Area Medical Center officials say Humana's claims the hospital system is trying to limit patients' healthcare choices are "unfounded."
In a statement emailed late Thursday, spokesman Dale Witte said CAMC hospitals "will still be accessible to Humana's beneficiaries, but will be considered out of network by Humana."
"In addition, CAMC has contracts with many other insurance companies, and patients can choose to enroll in these as well," Witte said in the release.
"As always CAMC is committed to caring for its community and will do everything it can to assist any patients through this transition. It is disappointing that Humana officials out of Louisville, Ky. have decided to attempt to negotiate a contract through media outlets."
According to a Wednesday release from Humana, Charleston Area Medical Center told the insurance company to drop Thomas Memorial and St. Francis hospitals from its network or risk losing CAMC's business.
That led to a breakdown in contract negotiations earlier this week, Humana representatives said.
"CAMC made it clear their goal in negotiations with Medicare Advantage payers is to direct and steer volume to their facilities. This is best achieved when they are the only participating hospital system in the network," Humana representatives said in an unsigned statement emailed late Wednesday.
"It's Humana's strong preference to have both hospital systems in Charleston in our health care provider network -- to preserve choice for our members in the area," the statement said. "It became clear in our conversations that Humana could not achieve its goal of preserving contractual relationships with both hospital systems in the Charleston area."
CAMC executives would not comment on why the negotiations fell through at a Wednesday board meeting.
"I don't really want to go into any specifics," CEO Dave Ramsey said, adding that he did not want any "ill will" between the hospital system and Humana that would harm future negotiations.
Steve Dexter, Thomas Health System's president and CEO, also released a statement about the Humana and CAMC's failed negotiations on Thursday.