Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Texas (BCBSTX) is again offering multiple health plan options with the opening today of the federal marketplace’s Special Enrollment Period (SEP) to expand access to quality, cost-effective healthcare to the uninsured and families statewide. The SEP will run until May 15, 2021.
While the regular Annual Open Enrollment Period for 2021 coverage ended December 15, 2020, President Joe Biden issued an Executive Order opening a SEP in response to the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency. No proof of a qualifying life event is required to buy a health plan during this new SEP.
“At a time when the COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact the health and economic well-being of many Texans, access to care and affordability are of vital importance,” said Dr. Leslie Weisberg, market chief medical officer for BCBSTX. “We will be offering a number of options, including plans where individuals may be eligible for financial assistance. And, as in past years, BCBSTX is offering individual and family plans in every zip code in Texas. These plans can be accessed through a robust network of providers and facilities.”
Selecting a health insurance plan that meets your needs can be challenging under normal circumstances but trying to navigate options during the COVID-19 pandemic can compound that anxiety. To help, BCBSTX will be holding virtual seminars throughout the SEP with Think Blue representatives providing help in English and Spanish so Texans can know what health plans are right for them and their families.
As well, multiple tools are available to help people navigate their options:
- The retail shopping cart is available now to begin exploring plans.
- Schedule a virtual one-on-one appointment, or register for a virtual educational seminar.
- Phone help is offered at 866-427-7497
- Monday – Friday: 8 a.m. – 8 p.m. CT
- Saturday: 8 a.m. – 6 p.m. CT
- Sunday: 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. CT
In Dallas and Harris counties, BCBSTX is offering plans where nearly half of the on-exchange population may qualify for a $0 monthly payment on a Bronze plan after subsidies are applied. In fact, subsidies helped 92% of Texans lower their monthly bill in 2020 for plans purchased on the exchange. Other important highlights for BCBSTX plans include:
- The lowest-cost Silver level plans in Dallas and Harris counties
- The only on-exchange carrier that offers coverage in all 254 counties in Texas
- The only on-exchange carrier in 37 counties in Texas in 2021
BCBSTX is collaborating with the Sanitas Medical Centers in the Houston and Dallas regions in the MyBlue Health HMO network, which allows members to enjoy a $0 copay for primary care in-person and primary care telehealth appointments with their Sanitas primary care physician.
About Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Texas
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Texas (BCBSTX) – the only statewide, customer-owned health insurer in Texas – is the largest provider of health benefits in the state, working with nearly 80,000 physicians and healthcare practitioners, and 500 hospitals to serve more than 5 million members in all 254 counties. BCBSTX is a Division of Health Care Service Corporation (HCSC) (which operates Blue Cross and Blue Shield plans in Texas, Illinois, Montana, Oklahoma and New Mexico), the country’s largest customer-owned health insurer, and fourth largest health insurer overall. Health Care Service Corporation is a Mutual Legal Reserve Company and an Independent Licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association.
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