Did you know that prices for medical services such as MRIs, CT scans and lab tests can differ greatly depending on where you go? You probably look for value when shopping for all kinds of items and services. Why not for medical services?
Beginning September 1, 2020, HealthSelect participants will be able to participate in HealthSelectShoppERSSM, a new program that allows you to save money and earn rewards when shopping for certain medical services and procedures.
What is HealthSelectShoppERS?
HealthSelectShoppERS is a health care shopping and savings program that can help you:
- Compare costs for many health care procedures
- Estimate your out-of-pocket costs
- Earn rewards by shopping for certain medical services and procedures
When you and your eligible dependents can shop for medical care, compare costs and choose lower-cost options for medical care, you can earn up to $500 in rewards each plan year.
How it will work
Step 1 – Starting September 1, after your primary care provider (PCP) or specialist recommends a HealthSelectShoppERS-eligible medical procedure or service, you can:
- Log in to Blue Access for Members at www.healthselectoftexas.com, click on the “Doctors and Hospitals” tab, and then the “Find a Doctor or Hospital” link.
- In Provider Finder, type in the name of your procedure to search; or select “Cost Estimates” and then “All Rewarded Procedures.”
- Compare the health care providers (facilities) that perform the procedure and select a lower-cost, quality provider that qualifies for a HealthSelectShoppERS reward.
Step 2 – Have the procedure at the HealthSelectShoppERS-eligible facility. Note: a referral or prior authorization may be required for your procedure.
Step 3 – When your medical service or procedure is complete, the provider will submit the claim to BCBSTX. Once BCBSTX processes the claim (usually within 30-45 days), and as long as you are still eligible, ERS will deposit your reward into your TexFlexSM health care flexible spending account (FSA), or if you are enrolled in Consumer Directed HealthSelect, a limited-purpose FSA. If you do not have a TexFlex health care FSA or limited-purpose FSA account, one will be opened for you.
Who will be able to participate?
In general, HealthSelectShoppERS is available to all benefits-eligible active employees enrolled in HealthSelect of Texas®, HealthSelectSM Out-of-State or Consumer Directed HealthSelect. Medicare primary participants, COBRA members, HealthSelectSM Secondary participants and retirees are not eligible for the HealthSelectShoppERS program.
To be eligible to earn an incentive, you have to be actively employed (not retired) at a state agency or higher education institution, or the enrolled dependent of an active employee:
- when you shop for the service or procedure,
- when you get the service or procedure and
- when Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Texas (BCBSTX) processes the claim.
If you aren’t eligible at any point in the process, you will not earn an incentive. Depending on the time between shopping and getting care, the entire process could take months.
Program details and resources will be posted to www.healthselectoftexas.com on September 1. You can then begin shopping and earning rewards.
Source: ERS News About Your Benefits (August 2020)