Empire covers town employees at local hospitals 

Town employees insured by Empire BlueCross BlueShield will be covered for services at East End hospitals despite a contract impasse and reports to the contrary.

The town’s policy with Empire includes a clause that allows treatment at out-of-network hospitals for those living more than 30 miles from a network hospital, Town Hall clerk Barbara Bloom confirmed. 

Town employees should call Empire at (800) 495-9323 for out-of-network approval prior to receiving scheduled services at Eastern Long Island and Southampton hospitals or Peconic Bay Regional Medical Center. Emergency care at the local hospitals is covered by Empire as required by law. Local physicians that have participated with Empire remain in the network.

Town Council candidate Linda Springer brought the out-of-network clause to the attention of the Town Board this week. During a work session discussion on September 29, board members had complained that East End hospital services were not available to town employees.