Blue Cross Blue Shield Medicare Advantage
Blue Cross Blue Shield (BCBS) is one of the insurers that sell Medicare Advantage in the US. The company consists of 36 independent companies that operate locally. The plans include a network of health centers, pharmacies, healthcare professionals and other providers. If it is your first time to utilize Medicare or you wish to switch plans, here are some vital things you need to know about Blue Cross Blue Shield Medicare Advantage plans.
To obtain one of the MA plans, you must have Medicare first. If you want to register in an MA plan, make sure that you register during the open enrollment period. Keep in mind that you can only apply during certain times of the year.
Regarding BCBS Medicare Advantage, this plan is approved by Medicare. When you obtain this plan, you will get Medicare Part A and Part B coverage. Not only that, but you will also get additional coverage that can reduce co-payments.
Blue Advantage plan includes coverage for a health center, medical and prescription drugs. With an Advantage plan, you do not need three plans to cover you. An Advantage plan will give you an easy, efficient policy that gives you coverage for most of your medical expenses. With that in mind, you can significantly lower your overall out-of-pocket expenses through one extensive policy.
Since seniors have varying requirements, BCBS offers a variety of options. You may choose to have Blue Advantage Total. It is a plan with inexpensive monthly costs. Or you may pick Blue Advantage Premier. It has richer benefits.
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What Benefits Can Blue Advantage Provide
There are tons of them. But the overall benefits will give you cost savings on your out-of-pocket expenses for the vital clinical benefits, such as inpatient hospital services and doctor office visits.
Part D Prescription Coverage
With a wide network of healthcare facilities and colors in the Blue Advantage network, you can easily access a facility and receive treatment near your home.
Medicare Advantage policies will cover every service in Initial Medicare. With an MA plan, you will get coverage for hospice treatment, new Medicare benefits, etc. Whatever MA plan you pick, you will get covered for urgently needed medical service and emergency treatment.
This plan, however, will not cover expenses that are not considered essential under Medicare. If you are not sure whether or not the treatment you need is essential, please consult with your insurer before you obtain such treatment.
Many Medicare Advantage policies can offer additional protection, such as vision, dental and hearing. They can also provide health and wellness programs. Most of the plan includes prescription medicine or Part D. In terms of the premium, you will have to pay for the Part B premium and the MA premium.
The basic Part B would cost around $134. But it could be higher on your case, depending on your earnings. If you have Social Security benefits, you can pay less than the said amount.
If you need a service that the policy states is not medically essential, then you will have to pay all the expenses associated with it. But you can appeal the choice.
You could demand a written advance protection choice for including the service you need to be clinically required so it will be covered. If the plan will not pay for the service but you believe it to be essential, you will need to request an advance coverage. Otherwise, you will pay the cost out of your pocket.
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Does BCBS MA Offer HMO?
BCBS offers HMO as one of its MA options. The HMO plan is one of the common choices among seniors. This type of MA plan is cheaper but it needs you to see a doctor or visit a healthcare facility that belongs to the BCBS network. But you can undergo treatment outside of its network if it is an emergency.
Its point of service HMO enables you to get treatment from an out-of-network healthcare facility or doctor. But the overall cost is higher than the standard HMO.
BCBS also offers PPOs. They are plans designed for individuals who travel frequently or who reside in rural areas where network facilities are difficult to find. With this plan, you do not need to seek a referral to see a specialist. You can also use out-of-network providers. However, the coverage may only be partial, if it is the case.
When you choose an HMO plan, you will need to choose a primary care doctor who will supervise all your healthcare services. PPOs, on the other hand, do not require you to pick a PCP.
Both of these plans, however, may include prescription medicine coverage through the Part D program. However, if you have a separate Part D plan, you will need to drop it before you can purchase an MA plan with Part D. The reason for this is that Medicare does not allow any overlapping plans. In other words, you cannot purchase two plans that cover the same items at the same time.
One more thing, when you have an HMO plan and your preferred doctor exits from your network, you will be notified. You could pick another primary care doctor. However, the doctor must be part of your plan’s network. If not, you can switch plans during the Open Enrollment period and go for a policy that includes your preferred doctor.
You can only register for any of the MA plans during an Open Enrollment period that happens every 15th of October and ends on the 7th of December. Beyond that, you can still enroll but you need to meet the special enrollment requirements. Your enrollment may also be rejected, especially if you have pre-existing conditions.
If you think that MA plans are too much for your healthcare or you cannot afford it, you may choose other alternatives. One of them is the Medicare Supplement. It is not as extensive as MA plans. However, it is still beneficial in helping you reduce your overall medical costs.
To know more about how Blue Cross Blue Shield Medicare Advantage plans work to your case, please use our online free tool. Or you may call our experts today.