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Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Florida Receives Approval for Medicare Advantage BlueMedicare Plans in 2008

JACKSONVILLE, Fla., Oct. 10 /PRNewswire/ -- Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Florida (BCBSF) today announced it has received federal approval for all of its 2008 Medicare Advantage BlueMedicare(SM) product offerings. This includes a new Private Fee for Service (PFFS) product, expansion of PPO and HMO products to additional counties, and new Part D prescription drug plan benefits.

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BlueMedicare PFFS and the BlueMedicare Rx Part D prescription drug plan will be available statewide. The BlueMedicare PPO will continue to be available in Palm Beach, Broward, Hillsborough and Pinellas counties, and will be a new offering in Escambia, Lee, Manatee, Marion, Pasco, Polk and Sarasota counties. The BlueMedicare HMO will continue to be available in Broward, Palm Beach and Miami-Dade counties and will now also be offered in Hillsborough, Pinellas and Polk counties.

"Every year, we strive to offer Florida Medicare beneficiaries products that provide quality service at an affordable price," said Barbara Benevento, group vice president of senior programs, BCBSF. "By offering new BlueMedicare product options and expanding availability of existing products we are increasing access to high quality, comprehensive coverage plans for more beneficiaries."

BCBSF's new BlueMedicare Private Fee for Service product allows PFFS members to use any provider-not only in Florida, but nationwide-who accepts Medicare and agrees to accept the terms and conditions of the BlueMedicare PFFS plan. No referrals are needed and pharmacy coverage is included. Members will have $0 co-pay for generic drugs and a mail order benefit of a 90-day supply for only two co-payments.

BlueMedicare PPO is for people who want the freedom to go out-of-network if they choose and still have coverage. BlueMedicare PPO provides comprehensive benefits, low, predictable co-payments and includes coverage for prescription drugs and dental benefits for no additional premium. Pharmacy coverage includes $0 co-pay for generic drugs and a mail order benefit of a 90-day supply for only two co-payments.

BlueMedicare HMO members pay no monthly plan premium, no deductible and low co-payments. This low cost plan includes prescription drug coverage and a dental benefit at no additional charge. Pharmacy coverage includes a mail order benefit of a 90-day supply for only two co-payments. Additionally, there are no referrals required to see an in network specialist.

The BlueMedicare Rx Part D prescription drug plan is offered statewide and provides comprehensive prescription drug benefits for both generic and brand name drugs at thousands of pharmacies nationwide. There are three plan options available and in 2008 all BlueMedicare Rx plans will have $0 co-pay for generic drugs. Mail-order benefits have been enhanced to include a 90-day supply of prescription drugs for only two co-payments.

BCBSF is expanding the number of health plans available to Medicare beneficiaries to increase access to affordable choices that fit a variety of needs. Medicare beneficiaries will have more options when selecting their healthcare and pharmacy coverage, whether they're looking for a plan that allows the freedom to choose their own doctors, a prescription drug plan that provides coverage through the gap or a plan with predictable costs.

Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Florida is a leader in Florida's health industry. BCBSF and its subsidiaries serve more than 8.7 million people. Since 1944, the company has been dedicated to meeting the diverse needs of all those it serves by offering an array of choices. BCBSF is a not-for-profit, policyholder-owned, tax-paying mutual company. Headquartered in Jacksonville, Fla., BCBSF is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, an association of independent Blue Cross and Blue Shield companies. For more information concerning BCBSF, please see its Web site at

SOURCE Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Florida
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