Navigation Links
Clock Ticking for Millions of Federal Employees Hoping to Avoid Blue Cross/Blue Shield Benefits Cut

Patients and Doctors Call on BCBS and OPM to Restore 2008 Benefits, Extend "Open Season" Beyond December 8th

Affected Patients and Doctors Available to Speak to the Press

WASHINGTON, Dec. 5 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Tick, Tick, Tick! Nearly half of the Federal workforce (four million employees nationwide) have until just December 8th to either change health care plans or face some costly penalties for procedures, surgeries and emergency care performed by doctors out of their "network." These changes affect all Federal Blue Cross Blue Shield Standard Option plan holders effective January 1, 2009.

Patients and doctors alike are calling on both Blue Cross Blue Shield (BCBS) and the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) - the agency which manages health care benefits for all Federal employees - to fully restore benefits for patients on the Standard Option plan to their 2008 levels, as well as extending the deadline for "Open Season" beyond December 8th.

Extending the deadline is critical because millions of Federal employees either don't know, or have just recently heard about these changes. Those employees need time to consider the consequences of staying or leaving the Federal Blue Cross Blue Shield Standard Option plan.

At a Capitol Hill hearing on Wednesday, December 3, Congressman Danny Davis (D-IL), Chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Subcommittee on the Federal Workforce, Postal Service and the District of Columbia, urged OPM to extend the open enrollment deadline. Later that day U.S. Senator Ben Cardin (D-MD) went a step further, calling on OPM to both extend the open enrollment deadline and fully restore the benefits cuts for Federal workers.

Also at the Wednesday hearing, Blue Cross Blue Shield's Stephen W. Gammarino indicated that he was open to both preserving the 2008 benefits and extending the open enrollment period beyond the 8th, but OPM's Nancy Kichak refused, seeming intent on delivering a lump of coal to the stocking of every Federal worker on the BCBS Standard option plan this holiday season.

Regardless of OPM's response, Gammarino should be encouraged to immediately make good on his pledge to change the 2009 plan so that these benefits cuts don't take effect.

In addition to a 13% increase in premiums, out-of-network benefits for procedures and surgeries will be severely curtailed. The policy change increases a patient's out-of-pocket cost to the first $7,500.00 for each procedure and surgery when using out-of-network providers, and imposes an out-of-pocket patient cost of up to $350.00 for care provided by an out-of-network emergency room consultant.

OPM has extended "Open Season" twice in the last several years: in 2006 and 2002.

To speak with an affected patient or doctor, please contact: Jason Miller at, or (202) 296-0263 x 136; or contact Gary Meltz at, or (202) 296-0263 x 166.

SOURCE DC Patients, Doctors and Healthcare Providers
Copyright©2008 PR Newswire.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. Time to Set Kids Back-to-School Sleep Clocks
2. Bodys Clock Never Adjusts to Daylight Savings Time
3. High-Fat Diet Can Disrupt Bodys Clock
4. Switch for Internal Body Clock Found
5. Boston IVF is First in Northeast to Offer Pioneering Test of Womens Biological Clock
6. Museum Open Around the Clock - BODY WORLDS 2 and The Tech Host 40 Hour Marathon!
7. Reproductive Medicine & Fertility Center is First in Southwest to Offer Pioneering Test of a Womens Biological Clock
8. Check Your Emergency Preparedness Kits When You Set Your Clocks, Says New American Public Health Association Campaign
9. New research provides dynamic visualization of simplest circadian clock
10. NYU dental professor discovers biological clock
11. Womens biological clock revealed: Hormone may predict age at menopause
Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/27/2015)... ... November 27, 2015 , ... Intellitec Solutions announced ... User Group (MSDSLUG). Recognized as Microsoft’s official group for end users of Dynamics ... software users, partners, industry experts and representatives. Intellitec Solutions’ membership status demonstrates their ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... ... November 27, 2015 , ... Keeping in ... for mental health and wellness consultation, has collaborated with a leading web-based marketplace ... knowledge gap experienced by parents and bring advice from parenting experts within their ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... ... , ... Dr. Thomas Dunlap and Dr. Patrick Coleman , ... Emergency Medicine at St., Joseph Health System’s Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital , co-hosted ... similar ways and require time-critical intervention to avoid large area heart damage and progressive ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... ... November 26, 2015 , ... Patients at Serenity Point ... come together on Thanksgiving Day to share the things that they are most ... Serenity Point YouTube channel, patients displayed what they wrote on index cards, describing ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... ... November 26, 2015 , ... ... Representative. As a franchise owner, Somu now offers travelers, value and care based ... packages, private cruise sales, as well as, cabin upgrades and special amenities such ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:11/26/2015)... UTRECHT, the Netherlands , November 26, 2015 /PRNewswire/ ...   A new combination approach blends immunotherapy ... --> A new combination approach blends immunotherapy with ... A new combination approach blends immunotherapy with ... the Netherlands has found that immunotherapy ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... 2015 Research and Markets ( ... "2016 Future Horizons and Growth Strategies in the ... Country Segment Forecasts, Competitive Intelligence, Emerging Opportunities" ... --> --> This new 247-page ... therapeutic drug monitoring market, including emerging tests, technologies, ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... 2015 Research and Markets ( ) ... Care Market by Type (Dressings, Therapy Devices, Active Wound ... Out-Patient Facility), and Geography - Global Forecast to 2020" ... --> --> The purpose of this ... of the global advanced wound care market. It involves ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: