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BCBS Texas Health Insurance Overview

Searching for family health insurance can be a nightmare! Luckily, my employer offers health insurance to its employees. I work for a company that offers insurance coverage through Blue Cross Blue Shield of Texas (BCBS TX). My co-pays are $25 for regular doctor visits and $35 to see a specialist. The plan I am under is a PPO plan. That means I can self-referral to any doctor that is in the BCBS network. You may be asking, what is the benefit of that exactly? I don't have to see my regular doctor to be referred to a specialist. Hence, I only one co-pay! I have a $1000 deductible then my plan will pay 80%. Once I reach $2000 out of pocket maximum, my plan pays 100% (except co-pays). I have prescription benefits included which runs $25/$45/$60 for the different generic and name brand tiers. Dental and vision is covered through a different employer sponsored company.

As an added perk, BCBS of Texas offers a free 24/7 nurse helpline. I can call anytime, any day and speak to a live nurse. The nurse screens my health issue and makes educated suggestions. Sometimes the suggestions may be that it's ok to use something over-the-counter, or that it's ok to wait to see a doctor. While other times, the suggestion is to seek immediate medical attention. This can be reassuring to someone that isn't quite sure if their need requires going to an Emergency Room. In addition, the nurse will follow up with you to see how you are doing.

Another added benefit would be the discounts. My husband and I were pleasantly surprised when we recently signed up at the gym. The clerk asked us what health insurance we had. When we told her we had Blue Cross Blue Shield of Texas and she said our enrollment fee would be cut in half. I received a discount at a nutrition supplement store, too. Surprisingly, there are many places I can go to get discounts just for having insurance through BCBS.

Blue Cross Blue Shield offers a website to its members that is useful and even educational. As a member, I can log-on and search through recipes, nutrition tips, exercise routine suggestions, and relaxation programs. All of this at no cost to me! There is even a place where I earn points for being health-conscious. Through my employer I rack up daily points for exercising, seeing my doctor for cholesterol and blood pressure screenings and even for just logging in to the nutrition site and searching recipes. These points turn into prizes that I choose. Even my kids can earn prizes. My health insurance rewards you for taking care of yourself!

BCBS has figured out a way to help its members save money at the doctors office. If my doctor draws labs or performs a procedure in office, it falls under my single co-pay for the visit. In other words, if my doctor's office does x-rays, labs, endoscopies, mammograms, biopsies or any other procedure in office, I only pay my co-pay for the visit! I don't have to deal with the 20% mess left after my deductible or anything like that. Also, under my plan, routine preventative (age-appropriate) screenings are covered at 100%. No coinsurance, deductible or co-pay.

Recently, BCBS made a major change. No longer will dependent 19 year olds be dropped off insurance for lack of being enrolled in school full-time. For example, my recent high-school graduate son turns 19 this July. He decided to take a year off to figure out what path to take. Before this change, he would have been dropped from my policy due to being 19 and not attending school full time. Due to this change in policy, he can stay on my policy until he turns 26, regardless of student enrollment status.

My health insurance company has gone above and beyond to try to send a message to their members...they want us healthy! I couldn't be happier with BCBS!



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