News Releases - 2013
October 1, 2013
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas Unveils New Website for Online Sales, Offers 28 BlueCare Plans on the Marketplace
Kansans shopping for their own health insurance in the coming months will be able to choose from a variety of BlueCare℠ plans – all of which meet the new federal guidelines for essential health benefits and no-cost preventive services – through two online sources. Consumers may purchase directly from Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas via a new sales website or by selecting one of the 28 BlueCare plans being offered by the company through the federally-facilitated Health Insurance Marketplace.
"For more than 70 years, Kansans have trusted Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas to offer benefit plans that cover the services they need while opening the door to the largest provider network in Kansas," said Andrew C. Corbin, president/CEO. "As the state's largest mutual insurance company, we are committed to offering benefit plans in all 103 counties in our service area, to helping individuals and business owners find the plan that best suits their specific situation, and to providing local customer service and timely claims processing. In this new era, we remain Kansans serving Kansans."
BCBSKS unveiled a redesigned website to coincide with the Oct. 1 start of the Affordable Care Act open enrollment period. The new section allows individuals who are ineligible for a tax credit and those who prefer to purchase directly from BCBSKS to use a simple, online process to buy health and dental insurance. By providing some basic information such as date of birth and ZIP code, the shopper will receive a complete list of available plans with premiums noted for each plan. The new site also offers a range of sort and filter options to provide easy ways to compare plans.
The enrollment process is easy and does not require the shopper to answer any health questions. Premiums are based solely on one's age, location, family size and tobacco use. Convenient payment options are available, including bank draft and credit card, or a "bill me later" option.
BCBSKS will offer plans in each of the four metallic levels on the Health Insurance Marketplace, including two plans at the Platinum level, six Gold plans, 10 Silver, six Bronze and four catastrophic plans. While all plans include the same essential health benefits, plans within the same metallic level differ in the combination of out-of-pockets costs (deductibles, coinsurance and copays), allowing consumers to choose a plan that best fits their financial needs.
All plans will include access to the largest provider network in Kansas; for 2013, the BCBSKS network consists of 96 percent of all health care providers in its service area, including 99 percent of medical doctors and 100 percent of hospitals. Many plans also include access to a worldwide network of contracting providers through the BlueCard® program.
In addition to the new online sales website, BCBSKS also provides educational information regarding health care reform at www.bcbsks.com/hcr.
BCBSKS is getting out in the community to educate Kansas consumers. The company is hosting a series of ACA town hall meetings in 11 communities between Oct. 1 and Nov. 7, with stops in Dodge City (Oct. 21); Garden City (Oct. 22); Hays (Oct. 29); Hutchinson (Oct. 7); Independence (Nov. 4); Lawrence (Oct. 1); Manhattan (Oct. 15); Pittsburg (Nov. 5); Salina (Oct. 28); Topeka (Oct. 3 and Nov. 7); and Wichita (Oct. 8 and Oct. 17).
Topics will include qualifying for an Advance Premium Tax Credit; who is required to carry insurance or pay a fine; the new rating system for determining premiums; essential health benefits and types of plans available; and shopping on the new Health Insurance Marketplace. Visit www.bcbsks.com/hcr and select "Community Events" to view a listing of all town hall dates and locations.
In addition, BCBSKS has created a speaker's bureau in order to provide trained experts to discuss the main points of health care reform and the new Marketplace throughout its service area. Upon request, speakers can be available for educational seminars, luncheons, health fairs, community organization meetings and other general speaking opportunities.
For more information on how to request a speaker for your community event, visit www.bcbsks.com/hcr, select "Community Events" and then use the "Complete the Speaker's Bureau request form" link to complete and email a short form to Blue Cross.
About Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas
For more than 70 years, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas has built a reputation of trust with its members and contracting providers by providing outstanding customer service while quickly and accurately processing claims; fairly administering benefit plans and contracts; offering programs, services and tools to help members improve or maintain their health; and operating under the highest ethical standards while being good stewards of premium dollars. Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association and is the state’s largest insurer, serving all Kansas counties except Johnson and Wyandotte. For more information, visit www.bcbsks.com.
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