Premera Blue Cross, MultiCare Expand Alliance to Keep Healthcare Costs Flat for Next Five Years

Mountlake Terrace and Tacoma, Wash., Nov. 29, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Premera Blue Cross and MultiCare Health System today announced they are expanding their strategic partnership to help rein in healthcare costs and deliver a better experience for patients across Washington.

The two locally based organizations have entered into a new, unprecedented agreement where MultiCare has committed to holding healthcare costs flat for five years for selected Premera-covered patients who have an established care relationship with a MultiCare-affiliated doctor.

“Our mission calls us to work collaboratively with like-minded organizations to develop innovative ways to improve the health care delivery system,” said Bill Robertson, President and CEO of MultiCare. “Working alongside Premera, we can design new ways to provide care while delivering better outcomes at a lower cost.”

The agreement initially covers more than 35,000 Washington-based Premera members who receive their health coverage through their employer, and who are chiefly located in Pierce, Spokane, Thurston, Kitsap and south King counties.

By managing the medical costs for patients to a flat trend, this new agreement is estimated to help prevent more than $200 million in costs for Premera members over five years.

“At Premera, we’re focused on making healthcare work better, and this cannot be accomplished by one person or organization,” said Dr. John Espinola, Executive Vice President, Chief Strategy and Product Officer for Premera. “This alliance places us on the same side of the table with MultiCare to tackle the No. 1 problem our members face – rising healthcare costs.”

In addition to improving healthcare costs over time, Premera-covered patients who seek care at MultiCare will receive a more personalized and streamlined healthcare experience, including:

  • Data sharing between Premera and MultiCare at the point of care, which will help simplify administrative processes and allow patients to receive more timely access to appropriate care.
  • Navigation services to help patients find care for complex and chronic care conditions.
  • Virtual care that integrates with MultiCare doctors and the health system’s medical records, including remote monitoring with video visits and house calls by board-certified physicians for severe, ongoing patient needs.

Physicians of Southwest Washington (PSW) will manage the care coordination and other elements of the new agreement.

Premera and MultiCare launched their first-of-its-kind alliance in Washington in 2018 with the collaboration of Peak Care, an exclusive health plan designed for Premera members seeking care with MultiCare in Pierce, Spokane and Thurston counties.  The alliance leverages Premera’s more than 80 years of experience providing health insurance coverage in Washington state with MultiCare’s integrated health system of hospitals, clinics and urgent care centers to help patients take control of their basic health needs, while better managing their costs.

About Premera Blue Cross
Premera Blue Cross is a leading health plan in the Pacific Northwest, providing comprehensive health benefits and tailored services to more than 2.5 million people, from individuals to Fortune 100 companies. For more information, visit

About MultiCare
MultiCare is a not-for-profit health care organization with more than 20,000 team members, including employees, providers and volunteers. MultiCare has been caring for our community for well over a century, since the founding of Tacoma’s first hospital and today is the largest community-based, locally governed health system in the state of Washington. MultiCare’s comprehensive system of health includes numerous primary care, urgent care and specialty services — including MultiCare Indigo Urgent Care, Pulse Heart Institute and MultiCare Rockwood Clinic, the largest multispecialty clinic in the Inland Northwest region.

About PSW
Physicians of Southwest Washington (PSW) is an Independent Physician Association and Population Health Company that offers intelligent healthcare analytics and comprehensive technology designed to improve population outcomes. PSW is a 51 percent owner of NW Momentum Health Partners ACO, a Next-Generation ACO. MultiCare is a minority owner of PSW.


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