Michigan Blues go full steam ahead on health care reform implementation

Many observers were caught by surprise when the U.S. Supreme Court decided to uphold the entire Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act — including the controversial individual mandate requiring all Americans to obtain health insurance.
But at the Michigan Blues, we’re moving full steam ahead with plans to ensure we are compliant and ready for health care reform.
In many ways, we’ve had the shortest distance to travel to become compliant with the law. For example, unlike most insurers, we already guarantee coverage to anyone who needs it and we’ve long practiced community rating which means we do not use health status to determine a premium rate. We also already exceed a new government requirement that says insurers must spend 80 cents of each premium dollar on medical expenses.

These are just some of the ways we were ready for change.  BCBSM also has been preparing vigorously in other areas from the day President Obama signed the law in 2010.

We’ve created a new business unit devoted entirely to preparing our company, customers and stakeholders for the many changes ahead. We’re also advising federal and state policymakers on how to create state insurance exchanges with consistent regulations to best serve consumers.

We’re taking several steps to help Michiganders be prepared for the law, including finding ways to make insurance more affordable for those who aren’t covered, and helping the uninsured understand how subsidies or rules that will expand Medicaid eligibility could help them purchase insurance on the exchange.

Whether you’re an individual consumer, a senior citizen, sales agent, employer or doctor, you can find more information about how health reform affects you at bcbsm.com/healthreform.

Photo credit Envios.

Daniel J. Loepp is president and chief executive officer of Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan.

Michigan Blue Cross Members: Find a Doctor, View Your Claims and Access Member Discounts on Your Mobile Phone

If you’re part of the 40 percent of adults in the U.S. who use your mobile device to access everything from funny videos to business email and bank statements, you’ll be glad to know you can now access BCBSM.com and MIBCN.com anytime, anywhere.

With Blue MobileSM, you can get the full experience of our website while you’re on the go.

Looking For a Doctor?

Provider search is now available on mobile devices so you can easily locate your doctor’s contact information, or find a new doctor at your convenience.

  1. Click on Find a Doctor on the home screen.
  2. Fill in the search categories so we can find what you’re looking for.
  3. Click Search.
  4. We’ll provide you with a list of detailed information for doctors that match your criteria. You can also click on a map to find the exact location of each physician.

 Take Control of Your Health Care

To access your personal account information, remember to sign up for our Member Secured Services online first.

Signing up is easy, simply visit bcbsm.com or mibcn.com on your desktop or laptop computer and register before attempting to access your personal information via the mobile web.

After registering, you’ll be able to manage your account from your mobile device. This includes viewing benefits and claims, as well as Explanation of Benefits statements.

Access Member Discounts with Healthy Blue XtrasSM

Once you’re registered to log in to Member Secured Services from your phone, you’ll also gain access to a variety of members-only discounts and special offers from Michigan businesses including:

  • Gym memberships

  • Healthy groceries

  • Fitness gear

  • Golf and ski resorts

We’re Listening to You

Our teams are always working to improve the experience of our members and we would love your feedback on how to make the things we do on the web even better.

Have you tried using our mobile website yet? Let us know what you think in the comments section below.

A day in the life of a Blues ID card

Part One: Doctor visit
You may think that your Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan and Blue Care Network ID card just sits in your purse or wallet waiting for the next time you go to the doctor or pharmacy. But did you know that those little Blues cards are actually pretty busy as they play an important role in leading Michigan to a healthier future?

Every Blues ID card is essential in helping people maintain their total body health and comes with the convenience of having a single card for medical, dental and vision services, depending on your plan. It also saves you money and helps you achieve your personal wellness goals.

Health insurance 101: Explaining hospital charges and patient costs

Eighth in a series of posts to help you better understand health insurance and how recent changes affect you.

If you’ve ever glanced at an Explanation of Benefits form, you know that it contains a confusing array of dollar figures, all for the same medical procedure.

The often wildly divergent figures illustrate how the modern health care system works.

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Blue Cross proposal protects Michigan’s most vulnerable seniors, while giving all seniors deep discounts on Medigap coverage

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan filed a proposal with our regulators today that would provide Michigan seniors with monthly discounts of $48, $64, $75 or $96 off the full price of our most popular Medicare Supplemental insurance plan, also known as Medigap.

Medigap is optional insurance that pays for many of the out-of-pocket costs that are charged when seniors visit the doctor or hospital.

The annual dollar value of the BCBSM Medigap discounts would be $576, $768, $900 or $1,152. The variations are based on seniors’ income – with those who have the lowest income getting the biggest discount on their health care.

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Fitness, fun and fireworks!

As more than a million people eagerly awaited the launch of thousands of fireworks above the Detroit River on Monday, June 21, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, Local 4 and the Parade Company awaited a launch of a different kind.

BCBSM's Ken Dallafior with WDIV anchors Carmen Harlan and Devin Scillian

High atop the Miller Parking Garage at the Flip Floppin Summer VIP Rooftop Party, the stage was set for the triumphant return of the Biggest Loser: Detroit Edition.

During WDIV’s live broadcast of the Target Fireworks, BCBSM Senior Vice President of Group Sales and Corporate Marketing, Ken Dallafior spoke with on-air anchors Carmen Harlan and Devin Scillian about Blue Cross’ commitment to leading Michigan to a healthier future. And, how that commitment is a driver in Blue Cross’ support of the Biggest Loser: Detroit Edition II.

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Imagine Having 250 Nurses at Your Fingertips – With BlueHealthConnection® You Can

BlueHealthConnection is a collection of health management programs that give Blues members access to health education, support, and health and wellness resources to help them take charge of their health.

BlueHealthConnection offers several programs that are supported by licensed, registered nurse health coaches and case managers. These experienced professionals assist members in their efforts to stay healthy, get healthier or manage illness. Available programs supported by registered nurse health coaches include:

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