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The Louisiana State Capitol, Wednesday, June 5, 2019, in Baton Rouge, La.

A statewide network of walk-in clinics has agreed to pony up $36 million to resolve a contract dispute with the insurance agency covering state employee's after officials last year discovered the vendor wasn't providing the return on investment previously promised. 

The agreement means that employees with insurance plans through the Office of Group Benefits can continue to use Access2day Health urgent care clinics for at least another year and a half without having to pay out-of-pocket expenses. 

In addition to the $36 million rebate, the state is also off-the-hook for $23 million in payments they would've owed from December 2020 to June 2021, according to Commissioner of Administration Jay Dardenne, who announced the resolution Friday during at a meeting of the Joint Legislative Committee on the Budget.

Allied Health and the state entered into a contract in July 2019 to allow members of Office of Group Benefits-backed insurance plans to receive primary care services at Access2day Health clinics.

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Access2day Health has almost 80 clinics statewide, including Acadiana Access Health in Lafayette; Patient Plus Urgent Care in Baton Rouge; and Doctors After Hours in Harvey, Metairie and New Orleans.

When David Couvillon took over as chief executive officer of the Office of Group Benefits on Oct. 21, he began reviewing contracts and found that Access2day Health wasn't delivering anywhere near $40 million worth of services as it was contractually obligated to do, Dardenne said.

The contract guaranteed a ‘return on investment' and included a surety bond valued at $42 million backing Access2day Health's performance. Dardenne said the state would've sued for that repayment if the agreement hadn't been reached. 

"Without litigating, we got basically almost everything we could’ve possibly  gotten had we litigated for years, so that makes it a double plus," Dardenne said.

The contract amendment will come before the legislature for formal approval in April. 

Email Blake Paterson at bpaterson@theadvocate.com and follow him on Twitter @blakepater