ERS announced recently that on September 1, BlueCross and BlueShield of Texas (BCBSTX) will become the plan administrator for HealthSelectSM of Texas and Consumer Directed HealthSelectSM.
Below are answers to some frequently asked questions regarding the
Why is ERS making this change?
Under state law, ERS is required to periodically rebid the contract for the HealthSelect third-party administrator (TPA). Rebidding the contract helps ERS determine that health plan participants and the State of Texas are getting the best possible value and service.
The current HealthSelect TPA contract was awarded in 2012 to UnitedHealthcare (UHC). BlueCross and BlueShield of Texas (BCBSTX) previously served as the ERS plan administrator.
When will this change take effect?
BCBSTX will become the new plan administrator on September 1, 2017. UnitedHealthcare will continue to be the HealthSelect TPA until August 31, 2017.
Will my rates change?
The change in plan administrators does not directly affect contribution rates or out-of-pocket costs like copays and coinsurance. ERS manages the contract and is responsible for setting rates, eligibility and enrollment for all the health plans in the Texas Employees Group Benefits Program. ERS also establishes the plan design, including setting copays, coinsurance and deductibles.
Contribution rates could change when the new plan year starts on September 1, 2017. If they do, it will be because of rising health costs and other factors – not the new third-party administrator.
Where can I find out if my doctors are in the BlueCross and BlueShield of Texas network?
An online provider search tool will be available before Summer Enrollment. You may also contact BlueCross BlueShield directly this summer for more information.
What if my doctor isn’t in the BlueCross and BlueShield of Texas network? Will I still be able to see him or her?
Yes, you can see a non-network provider. However, if you see a non-network provider, you will pay higher out-of-pocket costs, including a deductible. It costs much less to see a network provider.
Throughout the spring and summer leading up to the transition, we will provide regular updates about the transition. This information will also be posted on the ERS website.