Regence BlueShield Ushers in New Era of Health Care Management and Safety
Regence.com to Feature Patient Safety Survey Results From Local Hospitals,
Online Enrollment and Convenient Research Tools for More Informed Choices
SEATTLE, July 22 /PRNewswire/ -- Following extensive market research, Regence BlueShield today announced the launch of its newly redesigned and engineered Web site, www.wa.regence.com. The site was created in response to today's rapidly changing health-care environment, in which consumers are taking a more active role in care management and informed decision-making. "July 22 marks the launch of a long-term plan that demonstrates Regence BlueShield's commitment to providing its members and customers with the best service in the business and the tools they need to take control of their health care," said Mary O. McWilliams, Regence BlueShield president. "Regence.com will provide better access to more in-depth information to help people make good health-care decisions." Regence BlueShield is the first health plan in the state to provide online patient safety information. The cornerstone of the new Patient Safety section is in-depth hospital safety data based on the industry-recognized ratings of The Leapfrog Group. Consumers can compare how well local hospitals meet CPOE standards (Computerized Physician Order Entry), which allows physicians to prescribe treatment or drug therapy electronically and helps ensure a safer, more accurate process; and Intensive Care Unit (ICU) staffing standards. Also provided are statistics on which hospitals have reached the thresholds of providing sufficient numbers of medical/surgical procedures, which has been proven to lower the number of medical errors. Regence BlueShield has also begun to build patient safety standards into its contracts with hospitals that have made investments in patient safety, specifically in programs such as CPOE and ICU staffing standards. To date, the health plan has incorporated incentives for patient safety programs into its contracts with Northwest Hospital, Swedish Medical Center and St. Joseph's Hospital in Tacoma. The new site will launch with the following key features presented in an accessible, consumer-friendly format: -- User's Guide. The interactive user's guide provides answers to "frequently asked questions" about Regence BlueShield health coverage. -- Find a Doctor. The provider directory has been completely redesigned to create the new "Find a Doctor" service. -- Find a Pharmacy. Members can now easily search for a local pharmacy with the new pharmacy directory. -- Online Forms. All Regence BlueShield forms are organized in one distinct section to reduce hassle and paperwork. In the coming months, online enrollment capabilities will simplify and automate the health plan enrollment process. Employees will be able to quickly and accurately compare and choose products, and employers will benefit from lower administrative costs. In the future, Regence BlueShield members will be able to check the status of their claims, referrals and coverage online, and individual subscribers will be able to enroll via the Web. Regence BlueShield is the leading health plan in Washington and provides health-care coverage to more than 1 million members. Regence BlueShield is a not-for-profit company. It is one of 43 independent licensees of the national Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association that collectively provides coverage to 79 million -- or one in four -- Americans. Regence BlueShield also is an affiliate of The Regence Group. Other affiliates include Regence BlueCross BlueShield of Oregon, Regence BlueShield of Idaho and Regence BlueCross BlueShield of Utah. Collectively the Regence health plans cover some 3 million members and employ more than 6,000 employees. MAKE YOUR OPINION COUNT - Click Here http://tbutton.prnewswire.com/prn/11690X58113721
SOURCE Regence BlueShield
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