Monthly Archives:January 2016

Bluecross Blueshield SC: 19% rate increase for Grandfathered Plans

29 Jan , 2016,
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BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina is applying a 19 percent rate increase for Under 65, grandfathered plans ONLY (plans and freestanding drug benefits that became effective before March 23, 2010). BCBS-SC 19% rate increase
Under 65, non-grandfathered plans (plans that became effective between March 24, 2010 and December 15, 2013) WILL NOT receive a rate increase.

BCBS-SC members will have FOUR options:

Keep their current health plan. Many members will find that keeping their current health plans will be the best option. By keeping their grandfathered plans, members can keep their larger network of doctors and all their current benefits.

Change benefits within their current health plans. As long as they stay within their plan types, members could lower their monthly premiums by changing their deductibles, out of pocket or coinsurance.

Please know that certain benefit changes could cause you to lose your grandfathered status. If members lose their grandfathered status, they must choose new Affordable Care Act (ACA) plans.

Shop on the Private Exchange. Members who want to make significant benefit changes but do not qualify for an Advanced Premium Tax Credit (APTC) have the option to shop for an ACA plan through the BlueCross Marketplace with the Special Enrollment Period (SEP) Qualifying Life Event (QLE) called “Loss of Minimum Essential Coverage.”

Note: Members moving from a grandfathered plan to an ACA plan will receive a new benefit period. Deductible carryover is not an option.

Members can visit www.SChealthconnector.org to quickly get a quote and compare new ACA plans to their current plans.

Shop on the Federally Facilitated Marketplace (Marketplace). Members who qualify for an APTC and want to make significant changes to their benefits have the option to shop through the Marketplace on their anniversary date, also known as their benefit period date.


BCBS-SC: CareOnDemand℠ now available to most members!

26 Jan , 2016,
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Yesterday, Bluecross Blueshield of South Carolina (BCBS-SC) announced that a new telehealth service, Blue CareOnDemand℠ is now available to most group and individual members! Blue CareOnDemand is available to all Group and Individual members except Medicare Supplement and Business BlueSM Exclusive Upstate I members.

This is great news for Bluecross Blueshield of South Carolina members who purchased a health plan through the marketplace!

What is Blue CareOnDemand?

Blue CareOnDemand is a new telehealth offering from Bluecross Blueshield of South Carolina that gives allows members to connect to board certified physicians and other licensed healthcare professionals 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days per year through video visits!

Accessing Blue CareOnDemand:

There are two ways for members to register and create their patient profiles:

Search “Blue CareOnDemand” on iTunes or Google Play and download the mobile app.
Visit www.BlueCareOnDemandSC.com from a desktop or laptop computer.
Once registered, members can log in to the mobile app or website as needed and consult with doctors through video visits.

BCBS-SC Extension Offered to Individual ACA Members Trying to Make Binder Payments

5 Jan , 2016,
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Great news! Earlier today, Blue Cross Blue Shield of South Carolina (BCBS-SC) announced that members enrolling in Individual ACA plans effective January 1st, 2016, have an extension to make their initial binder payment! Originally due by January 1st, 2016, this announcement allows Blue Cross Blue Shield of South Carolina members until midnight, January 15th, 2016 to make their first payment. Please note this ONLY applies to Blue Cross Blue Shield of South Carolina.

From the email release:

BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina (BCBS-SC) is offering members a one-time extension to pay their binder payment (i.e. their first premium payment) for January.
Premiums must be paid by midnight on Friday, January 15.

Payment Options
Members who need to make a payment can do so:

Online through My e-Bill.
By calling Marketplace Operations Customer Service at 855-404-6752
In-person at a South Carolina BLUE retail center
Note: We are still experiencing high call volumes on our customer service phone lines. Please encourage your clients to use My e-Bill for payments.

As a reminder, the federal government will impose a tax penalty to most individuals who do not have insurance coverage beginning January 1. If the individual purchases coverage with an effective date of February 1, then the tax penalty will be prorated, so they could still face a fine when filing their 2016 federal taxes.