Talk to your doctor about a drug before you fill it

Many people stop taking drugs because they cost too much, didn’t seem to work or had ugly side effects. If you stop taking a drug, your health problem may get worse and wind up costing you more later. You can save yourself from going down this path by asking your doctor a few easy questions:

About your coverage

  • Is the drug covered?
  • Why do I need this drug?
  • Will a generic work for me?
  • Do I need to try a generic or other drug first?
  • Is there an over-the-counter option?

About the drug

  • Are there any side effects?
  • How often should I take the drug?
  • For how long will I be taking the drug?
  • Must I avoid certain foods, drinks or other things while I’m taking the drug?
  • What should I do if I forget to take a dose?
  • How will the drug interact with other drugs I’m already taking?
  • Do I need to wait for approval?

 

Talking to your doctor about the drugs he or she orders is important. You’ll feel more comfortable taking a drug that best treats your health problem and have fewer surprises at the pharmacy.

 

Find out about Blue Cross covered drugs here

Find out about Humana covered drugs here

Online doctor visits available 24/7

BlueCare is now available 24/7 to let customers have online doctor visits using a computer, laptop, tablet, smartphone or other internet-accessible device with a camera.

Telemedicine services are a benefit for all fully insured group and individual customers. The services are offered at the same cost share as a primary care physician-level office visit.

BlueCare and telemedicine offer customers expanded access to care outside of their doctors’ usual office hours, with greater convenience and at a lower cost than the emergency room. Since Blue Cross recently raised co-pays on ER visits up to $350 (previously from $150-$200, depending on plan type) across all non-grandfathered fully insured plans in 2017, BlueCare can be a good way for customers to get treatment for minor health issues and keep their out-of-pocket costs in line.

Some common conditions treated by telemedicine include cough or cold, bladder infections, mild stomach viruses, pink eye, rashes, allergies or sinusitis. Telemedicine can also be used for follow-up care and, in some cases, medication refills.

How do customers use BlueCare?
BlueCare is online at www.BlueCareLA.com. To have an online visit, customers need to use a laptop, desktop computer or other internet-accessible device with audiovisual capability so they can see and speak with the doctor. They can find out if a device is going to work for BlueCare before a visit by using the “Test Computer” link in the top-right corner of www.BlueCareLA.com.

  • To use BlueCare from a smartphone or tablet, customers can download the BlueCare app for Android and Apple devices by searching for “BlueCare” (one word) in the Apple App Store or Google Play.  Statistically, most users prefer accessing telemedicine services via mobile app.
  • On the first visit, customers will create a member account with a log-in ID and password that they will use each time they use BlueCare.  They can create the account using the web-based site (www.BlueCareLA.com) or the BlueCare mobile app, and use the same log-in information for both.
  • Once logged into the BlueCare site, customers will see a list of doctors available to treat them and can choose the one they want to see. Each BlueCare doctor has a short biography describing his/her experience, languages spoken, etc., which is posted on the site. All physicians are U.S. trained and board certified.

How much does BlueCare cost? 
All Blue Cross customers can use BlueCare by paying a flat fee, typically $39, at the time of the visit. Depending on the telemedicine benefits that are included on their plans (typically the same cost share as a PCP office visit), customers may receive a refund from Blue Cross once the claim has processed.

Who do I call if I am having trouble with BlueCare?
If you are having a technical problem with the www.BlueCareLA.com website or the BlueCare app for Android and Apple devices, call 1-855-269-3554 or email BlueCareSupport@americanwell.com.
 
How can I learn more about BlueCare?

Skimping on your Health Plan may be a poor financial decision

According to chief financial analyst, Greg McBride,

“It doesn’t make sense to go without health insurance. A healthy 30-year-old could break their leg tomorrow.”

Under Affordable Care Act guidelines, Americans without health insurance may face a tax penalty.

The flip side is, you may also qualify for subsidies that bring down the price of a health plan.

2017 Individual Open Enrollment

LET’S GET READY

Schedule your appointment today

EVERYONE needs to schedule a phone call appointment to re-enroll for 2017 coverage.

The only exceptions are:

  • Medicare Supplement plan holders and
  • Individuals with grandfathered plans

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THE COUNTDOWN HAS BEGUN

OPEN ENROLLMENT BEGINS TOMORROW! Our office is gearing up for the 2017 Open Enrollment season and we need you to get ready as well! Here are a few changes that you will see in 2017:

  • Blue Cross will move to a closed RX formulary, meaning some prescriptions simply will not be covered. On RX copay plans, members will have a generic RX copay but pay a coinsurance for all covered brand and non-preferred brand RX.
  • United Healthcare will not be an option for 2017. If you are currently enrolled with United Healthcare we will help you choose a new insurance company during our phone call.
  • Humana is discontinuing some of their individual plans for 2017. Watch for a letter about a specific plan design.
  • Vantage will remain an option on and off the Marketplace.

BE PREPARED

Here are a few things we will need you to have prepared for our phone call:

  • 2017 estimated household income. Make sure to include every person that is on your tax return.
  • Who will you claim on your 2017 tax return?
  • Married? As a reminder, you must file a joint tax return with your spouse.
  • Does your employer or your spouse’s employer offer group health insurance? If so, what is the cost for the employee only coverage?
  • Does your income fall between 138% and 400% of the FPL according to your tax size household?

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Let’s Set a Date!

Our time frame is super short this year, so we are setting appointments NOW. We have between November 1st and December 14th to make changes that will go into effect January 1st.

So… let’s set a date.

Please click the link above or call our office to schedule your appointment TODAY!

(225) 622-6554

Appointments will be scheduled every 30 minutes so we’ve got to talk fast and make a decision quick. Being prepared is a MUST this year!

We are happy and honored that you continue to choose us as your insurance broker. We strive to give you the best possible service before, during and after the enrollment. We love our clients and hope to make this enrollment season super easy for you.

Please show us plenty of grace and mercy as we help you, our valued clients, with this nearly impossible task of re-enrolling over 1,000 clients in 6 weeks. Have you done the math? Yeah… That’s 45 clients per day including Saturday and Sunday. Oh my…

Team #NoDaysOff #WeLoveOurClients

Trish Freeman, The Insurance Lady

(225) 622-6554

trish@insurancelady.com

Blue Cross 2017 Pharmacy Benefit Changes

Guide to Changes in Drug Coverage for Fully Insured Members in 2017

In 2017, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana will implement a closed formulary for non-grandfathered individual and non-grandfathered small group (2-50) plans and make annual formulary updates to drug coverage for all other members.

New covered drug list:

Affected Members: non-grandfathered individuals and non-grandfathered small group plans

Today, the Blue Cross formulary is open for all members. This means Blue Cross cover all contract-eligible prescription drugs at different cost-share levels. Starting Jan. 1, 2017, drug lists for non-grandfathered individual and non- grandfathered small group (2-50) plans will be closed. This means Blue Cross will not cover every drug, only those on the list. Continue reading “Blue Cross 2017 Pharmacy Benefit Changes”

Louisiana Marathon Discount

Blue Cross and HMO Louisiana members can use the code BCBSLA to get 20% off the registration fee for the 2017 Louisiana Marathon and its shorter distance races.

The Louisiana Marathon is a nationally recognized, three-day running festival that has a race for everyone. There will be a kids’ marathon, 5K, half marathon and full marathon. It will be held January 13-15, 2017.

To sign up or learn more visit thelouisianamarathon.com or follow the Louisiana Marathon on Facebook or Twitter @thelamarathon

 

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Expecting Moms

Healthy Blue Beginnings Can Help You

If you are pregnant or thinking about becoming pregnant, or have a baby who is younger than 1 year old, the Blue Cross Healthy Blue Beginnings program may be for you. Through the program you can get confidential help from nurses to help keep you and your baby healthy. Best of all, it doesn’t cost you extra if you have maternity coverage or dependent coverage for your baby.

Call Blue Cross nurses and speak to someone who is dedicated to Healthy Blue Beginnings

  • Call 1-800-317-2299
  • To speak with a nurse, press 1

Continue reading “Expecting Moms”