- Associated Press - Thursday, February 6, 2014

VALHALLA, N.Y. (AP) - Empire Blue Cross says it has signed an agreement with the Westchester Medical Center.

Patients and lawmakers had expressed outrage after the medical center said it could not accept insurance purchased through the state health exchange in Westchester, Rockland and Putnam counties. CEO Michael Israel said the reimbursements are too low to cover the costs of the services it offers as a teaching hospital.

The Journal News (https://lohud.us/N8pMAu ) says Empire confirmed the agreement on Thursday. Medical center officials were not immediately available for comment.

Westchester Medical Center used to be a public hospital. After years of red ink, it became a public benefit corporation 15 years ago.

It still uses public land and buildings, and its employees are part of the state pension system.

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Information from: The Journal News, https://www.lohud.com

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