EAGAN, Minn., April 2, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota (Blue Cross), the state's leading health insurer, is increasing medical access and financial protection for its members by waiving all patient costs related to in-network COVID-19 treatment and care, including hospitalization.
The treatment cost waiver applies to all members in fully insured commercial plans, which encompass thousands of small to large businesses throughout the state; Minnesotans who purchase Blue Cross coverage on their own; and seniors enrolled in Medicare. The waiver will be in effect through May 31, 2020. Self-insured employers will have the flexibility to direct Blue Cross to administer the same change within their uniquely designed health benefit plans.
"Blue Cross wants our members to know we're here to support them through this pandemic," said Dr. Craig Samitt, president and CEO of Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota. "We want to remove barriers to health care and offer peace of mind during this uncertain time. Blue Cross is here to help. We'll continue to support our members and our communities throughout the duration of this crisis."
The cost waiver for COVID-19 related care is the latest commitment made by Blue Cross to help slow the spread of the coronavirus and ensure clarity and predictability of coverage for our members. Previously announced coverage changes include:
Waiving any copay, coinsurance or deductible costs for COVID-19 tests and related office visits
Increasing access to prescription medications by waiving early medication refill limits on 30-day prescription maintenance medications and/or encouraging members to use 90-day mail order benefit
Pausing all prior authorization requirements for any care in the diagnosis and treatment of COVID-19
Encouraging the use of virtual care to help members maintain social distancing standards and minimize risk of exposure
Waiving costs for Doctor On Demand for members whose benefits include coverage of Doctor on Demand services, through June 14, 2020
Increasing the types of technology that providers can use remotely, including FaceTime and Skype
Expanding the types of services that can be provided via telehealth channels, including behavioral health; physical, occupational and speech therapies; and medication management
Stay up to date on Blue Cross' COVID-19 coverage by visiting bluecrossmn.com/coronavirus. Doctor On Demand is an independent company providing telehealth services.
About Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota, with headquarters in the St. Paul suburb of Eagan, was chartered in 1933 as Minnesota's first health plan and continues to carry out its charter mission today: to promote a wider, more economical and timely availability of health services for the people of Minnesota. A nonprofit, taxable organization, Blue Cross is the largest health plan based in Minnesota, covering 2.9 million members in Minnesota and nationally through its health plans or plans administered by its affiliated companies. Blue Cross® and Blue Shield® of Minnesota and Blue Plus® are nonprofit independent licensees of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, headquartered in Chicago.