Memorial Hospital announced Friday that it recently finalized a new agreement with Highmark Blue Shield.

The new contract went into effect Feb. 1 and continues to provide Highmark members in-network access to Memorial Hospital and its various services, whether elective or emergency.

"We continue to serve patients in-network with Highmark insurance with no interruption to their coverage," said Sally J. Dixon, the hospital's chief executive officer, in a statement. "Patients can still see their same physician and receive the same high standard of care they've become used to at Memorial. We take seriously our responsibility to provide care for our community and are fortunate to be able to do so in collaboration with Highmark."

The new agreement ensures that local residents with Highmark insurance have options that include community-based physicians, specialists and physicians on the hospital's medical staff.

-Reach Eyana Adah McMillan at