SPOTLIGHT: Insurance holdback leads to hospital staff cuts

Staff cuts are never fun, but at MeritCare Health System, execs must be particularly frustrated. That's because the cuts are tied to an announcement by Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Dakota, which, due to losses of its own, is withholding 2.5 percent of MeritCare's reimbursements between Aug. 1 and Dec. 31 of this year. The Blue plan's leaders say they're holding back funds because they're struggling with an unexpected increase in claims costs. Article (reg. required)