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To our Oregon Individual members:
Earlier this spring, Regence BlueCross BlueShield of Oregon announced the discontinuation of some individual health plans statewide, and network changes for Portland area Individual members. A pressing concern for our members has been the rising cost of health care. Therefore, in response to this concern, we partnered with two competitively priced health systems (Adventist Health & Tuality Healthcare) to provide lower-cost options for our members in the Portland-metro area.
When we announced our plans to provide lower-cost options, we heard clearly from many of our members that choosing their provider was equally important. As a result, we are restoring several network options for Individual families in the Portland-metro area.
Five-Network Choice & Transparent Pricing:
Individual members will be allowed to choose one of five Oregon Select networks as their preferred provider network for their family:
- Oregon Select Adventist Health
- Oregon Select Legacy Health
- Oregon Select OHSU
- Oregon Select Providence
- Oregon Select Tuality
Not only will members be able to select from these networks, but for the first time they will also be transparent in price. This allows our members to compare the prices and benefits of five leading health care provider networks and make the best choice for their families.
Effective dates changed
To allow for better coordination and enhanced member experience, we have decided to implement these changes, along with the announced state-wide discontinuation, beginning December 1 for all impacted members. We are delaying this effective date from the previously announced October 1 to ensure that our members have all of the information they need to make informed decisions about their health care needs. It's also important to understand that these changes only impact our Individual members. Group membership and Medicare membership along with all other lines of business are not affected.
Assisting our members
We are dedicated to helping our members through this transition. We value the patient/doctor relationship and want to ensure our customers have all of their questions answered so they are ready with the information they need to make the best decision for their families in advance of December 2012. We have also created a dedicated hotline for members to call with specific questions: 1 (888) 675-6570
Frequently Asked Questions
Why is Regence changing the network offering from the options previously announced?
We are working to best address the concerns from our members who have voiced that choice of provider network is important—not just costs. With this decision our goal is to help address both concerns by restoring a broader network of preferred providers at a range of costs so our customers can make the best decision for their family's health and budget.
Why didn't Regence provide these five options initially?
Our initial decision was based on addressing affordability and trying to provide lower-cost options for individual members in the Portland area. We heard clearly that choice is also important. Therefore, we are responding in the most cost-effective way to expand network options so customers have a variety of options to choose from at a range of prices.
Why aren't you restoring all the providers—not just OHSU, Providence and Legacy?
The bottom line is controlling costs. Restoring all provider options would result in even higher rate increases for all individual members than what will likely be proposed in the coming weeks. These five network options will allow us to provide significant choices for our customers at a range of prices to fit their family budgets.
Why is Regence telling me now about a change that isn't going to happen until December or beyond?
By state statute, Regence is required to notify members of upcoming changes. Additionally, we believe in providing transparent information to our members as soon as we have the details to allow them to better manage their health care decisions.
What does this mean to my premium cost?
Premium will differ depending on the preferred network you choose. Premium is determined by your choice of plan and network, your family composition and age.
How can I evaluate the price of each provider network to determine which is best for me?
Each network will be priced differently. Detailed rate sheets will be provided in an upcoming package of materials to allow you to evaluate the premium impact for each network option. Network choice does affect the premium amount. The benefits of your health plan remain the same regardless of which network you choose.
Will I automatically be assigned to an Oregon Select Network near me, or can I choose my desired provider network?
Yes. To ensure you have no break in coverage, a preferred network will be assigned to you. However, you can choose any of the other Oregon Select Networks by completing the Plan Change Request Form that will be mailed to you, or by calling Customer Service.
How do I choose one of the other Oregon Select Networks as my preferred provider network?
You can choose any of the other four Oregon Select Networks by completing the Plan Change Request Form that will be mailed to you, or by calling Customer Service. To find a provider in the Oregon Select networks you can use our "Find a Provider" tool, then click on "Advanced Search."
When will this change take place?
Beginning December 1, 2012 for some members, and ending November 1, 2013, for new members who enroll with us in November 2012.
Who can I call for more information?
Regence has a dedicated phone number established for you to call. You can dial 1-888-675-6570 with any additional questions and a trained Customer Service representative will be ready to assist you.