Federal Employee Program

The Blue Cross and Blue Shield Service Benefit Plan, also known as the BCBS Federal Employee Program® (BCBS FEP®), has been part of the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program (FEHBP) since its inception in 1960. It covers about 5.5 million federal employees, retirees and their families out of the nearly 8 million people who receive their benefits through the FEHBP.

The Blue Cross Blue Shield Association negotiates annually with the U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM) to determine the benefits and premiums for the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Service Benefit Plan. The 35 local member companies of the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association are the primary points of contact for Service Benefit Plan members. Those Plans, including Regence, are responsible for processing claims and providing customer service to BCBS FEP members.

Claims are processed according to the benefits, rules, guidelines and regulations of the federal government, which supersede state laws. Blue Cross and/or Blue Shield Plans offer three coverage options: Basic Option, Standard Option and FEP Blue Focus.

Identifying members

All FEP member numbers start with the letter "R", followed by eight numerical digits. Note: On the provider remittance advice, the member number shows as an "8" rather than "R".

The enrollment code on member ID cards indicates the coverage type. View sample member ID cards.


Both the Basic and Standard Option plans require that some services and supplies be pre-authorized. The Blue Focus plan has specific prior-approval requirements.

View the lists:

Submit pre-authorization requests via Availity Essentials.

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