Cigna disputes CMS contract

Tuesday, February 28, 2006

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Cigna has filed a complaint with CMS over the agency’s decision to award another company a $97 million contract to handle billing and customer service for Region D.
CMS in January named Fargo, N.D.-based Noridian Administrative Services as the Medicare Affiliated Contractor (MAC) for the region, replacing Cigna. The five-year contract begins July 1, 2006.
But Noridian’s contract has been put on hold, reported the Grand Folks Herald on Feb 1. A lot is on the line: The company recently announced plans to add more than 140 jobs at two facilities.
A Cigna official declined to discuss why it filed the complaint.
A CMS official told the newspaper that the Government Accountability Office (GAO) must make a decision within 100 days.
CMS named three other MACs earlier this year: HealthNow (Region A), AdminaStar Federal (Region B), and Palmetto GBA (Region C).
Part of CMS’s DMERC shuffle also involved naming Program Safeguard Contractors (PSCs) to handle fraud and abuse and to craft policy.