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Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana lowers costs for members being tested or treated for COVID-19

Posted at 4:00 PM, Apr 02, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-02 18:19:43-04

BATON ROUGE – To help members get the care they need without the added stress of worrying if it will be covered or what it will cost, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana is waiving cost-sharing for COVID-19 medical treatments.

Blue Cross had previously announced it was covering all medically necessary diagnostic tests for COVID-19 without any out-of-pocket costs to members, as long as the tests are consistent with U.S. Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) guidance.

“We know our members have a lot of concerns during this unprecedented health crisis, but getting the care they need shouldn’t be one of them,” said Blue Cross President and CEO I. Steven Udvarhelyi, M.D. “We don’t want anyone to delay seeking COVID-19 testing or treatment because they are worried about how much they’ll have to pay for it. This is one burden we can lift from our members.”

Effective April 1 through May 31, Blue Cross is waiving members’ out-of-pocket costs (deductible, copay or coinsurance) for medical treatment of COVID-19 by in-network physicians, urgent care centers, hospitals and other healthcare providers.

These changes are for most members who buy their own healthcare coverage (individual members) and those who are members of fully insured groups. Blue Cross will allow self-insured employer groups the option to waive their members’ out-of-pocket costs for COVID-19 treatment.

Blue Cross has also made available at no cost 24/7 online visits with BlueCare, the insurer’s signature telehealth platform, in response to the COVID-19 health crisis.

In addition to BlueCare, Blue Cross covers members’ telehealth visits from in-network doctors, nurse practitioners, physician assistants, registered dietitians and physical, occupational or speech therapists. In-network providers can deliver telehealth services through online visits or by phone. For any telehealth visits other than BlueCare, Blue Cross members will pay their standard cost-share (deductible, copay or coinsurance).

And, Blue Cross is covering in-home visits from network occupational, speech and physical therapists, to help members get these services without having to go somewhere for care. Blue Cross members will pay their standard cost-share (deductible, copay or coinsurance) for therapy visits.

Members who are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 should contact their regular healthcare providers, who can work with them to determine if they need to be tested. If you don’t have a regular healthcare provider, please call 211 to reach the Louisiana statewide information network for assistance.

You can visit the Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana YouTube channel to see short videos with the clinical team and others discussing COVID-19, how to prevent spreading illnesses and more. Subscribe to know when new videos are added. You can also connect with Blue Cross on social media for regular updates on COVID-19 and other health topics.

For information on what Blue Cross is doing for members during the COVID-19 situation, visit www.bcbsla.com/covid19.