PROVIDENCE, RI (October 15, 2020) – Blue Cross & Blue
Shield of Rhode Island (BCBSRI) is making it easier for Medicare-eligible
adults across Rhode Island to access the value of $0 by offering enhanced
Medicare Advantage plans that include convenient ways to remain healthy, stay
active and obtain high-quality, affordable healthcare during this unpredictable
In addition, BCBSRI’s BlueCHiP for Medicare Value (HMO-POS)
plan is better than ever, and enrollment is now offered through a new
interactive website for new or returning members to learn about the plans’
ongoing benefits and digital offerings. For added convenience, members already
enrolled in a BCBSRI Medicare Advantage plan don’t have to do anything at all to
keep the same plan and receive the new and enhanced benefits.
“We know that many Rhode Islanders’ lives are much more
complicated due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and we’ve added benefits to our 2021
plans to address some of the concerns we’ve heard from members,” said Melissa
Cummings, executive vice president and chief customer officer at BCBSRI. “New
and enhanced offerings - like care coordination specifically tailored for
dementia, an annual caregiver reimbursement, and an enhanced over-the-counter benefit
with an expanded network of retailers - highlight the evolving needs of our
Medicare population, as we try to best support the health and well-being of all
BCBSRI will continue to offer its enhanced BlueCHiP for
Medicare Value plan in 2021, which delivers maximum savings by making a number
of benefits available at no cost. These benefits include:
$0 monthly premium
$0 primary care provider visits at patient-centered medical
$0 labs and X-rays
$0 prescription drug deductible
$0 generic prescription drugs
$0 rides to the doctor, senior centers, libraries and Your
Blue StoreSM locations
It also includes a number of new benefits, which are
available with all BCBSRI Medicare Advantage plans. They include:
New Insulin Savings Program – Low $35 monthly insulin copay
that remains consistent through the coverage gap. Available on select insulins.
New Dementia Care Coordination Program – Members and
caregivers can receive support and resources specifically tailored for dementia
or a dementia-related diagnosis.
New Peer Recovery Program – Support, education, and
resources available to facilitate recovery from a substance use disorder.
New Volunteer Opportunities – In-person and virtual
volunteer opportunities with leading local and national organizations are
available through community partner, Amava.
BCBSRI is continuing to offer the HealthMate for Medicare
(PPO) plan, which provides a wide national network with no referral
requirements, an open pharmacy network, a $2,000 dental benefit including
crowns, and flat dollar copays for in- and out-of-network benefits.
Benefits that support wellness goals
BlueCHiP for Medicare Value and HealthMate for Medicare
feature plans also include several benefits to support wellness goals:
New caregiver reimbursement – This newly added benefit gives
members $50 per year to gift to a caregiver who provides them with basic
household and/or transportation assistance.
Wellness reimbursement – This $200 per year benefit can be
used toward a favorite healthy activity like a fitness class, weight-loss
program, sports lesson, golf and more.
Fitness tracker – A no-cost Max Buzz™ activity monitoring
device offers real-time information. This can be paired with the Virgin Pulse®
wellness program to increase physical activity.
Acupuncture with a reduced copay – This continued benefit
now features a reduced rate of $15/visit for up to 12 visits per year.
Benefits focused on convenience and flexibility
To help members adapt to this ever-changing environment, all
2021 BCBSRI Medicare Advantage plans include new or enhanced key benefits for
even more convenience and flexibility, including:
Over-the-counter (OTC) benefit – $25-$200 per quarter
(depending on plan) on a debit card to use on health-related items at CVS
Pharmacy®, as well as newly added Walmart, Dollar General, Family Dollar, Rite
Aid and Walgreens.
Transportation opportunities – Up to 24 one-way rides
to or from a primary care provider (PCP) or specialist, as well as newly added
community locations that support health and well-being, like senior centers and
$0 national gym benefit - $0 national gym benefit with more
than 14,000 fitness centers across the country as well as a selection of new
home fitness kits.
Meal deliveries – One week of home-delivered meals when
arriving home from a hospital stay.
$0 Doctors Online visits – Members can talk to top-rated,
board-certified doctors or therapists from the comfort of their home—for $0.
Dental coverage – Dental coverage is included in most
plans, with 90 percent of Rhode Island dentists included in the BCBSRI network.
$0 mail order drugs – A $0 copay for a 90-day supply of
many generic drugs in Tiers 1 & 2 delivered to members’
doors. Excludes medical-only plans.
Hearing – No cost routine office hearing visits and up
to two hearing aids for as low as a $200 copay per ear, plus a three-year
supply of batteries, and a hearing aid fitting and evaluation.
Allowance for glasses and vision hardware – No cost
routine office vision visits and a $100-$200 allowance (depending on plan) for
glasses or vision hardware.
BCBSRI is also continuing to offer the ACCESS Program, which
is available to Medicare-eligible adults who qualify for Extra Help and/or
Medicaid. By choosing the BlueCHiP for Medicare Value plan and a primary care
provider from Oak Street
Health, ACCESS members will have access to even more zero dollar
no-cost copays, as well and a health plan designed to meet their lifestyle and
With three locations (one in Warwick and two in Providence),
and a fourth soon to open in Woonsocket, Oak Street Health is committed to
providing services specifically for Rhode Islanders who receive their Medicare
coverage through BCBSRI. Members can expect a dedicated care team to provide
insight about their Medicare benefits, telehealth visits, same-day or next-day
appointments, as well as transportation to and from Oak Street Health
Virtual informational meetings will be held to help Rhode
Islanders learn more about BCBSRI’s Medicare Advantage offerings for 2021 from
the comfort and safety of their homes. New or returning members can schedule
one-on-one virtual video appointments, attend virtual meetings, and review
plans by visiting https://www.bcbsri.com/medicare/www.bcbsri.com/medicare/.
During the Medicare Annual Enrollment Period (AEP), between
October 15 and December 7, 2020, eligible adults can enroll or make changes to
their Medicare plan, which goes into effect on January 1, 2021. If members are
currently enrolled in any BCBSRI Medicare Advantage plan and don’t want to make
changes, no action is needed to keep the same plan for 2021.
Those considering a new Blue Cross plan may call BCBSRI’s
Medicare Sales team at 1-800-505-2583 (TTY: 711.) From October 1 through
March 31, the hours are 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., seven days a week. From April 1 to
September 30, the hours are Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Existing members may call BCBSRI’s Medicare Concierge team
at (401) 277-2958 or 1-800-267-0439 (TTY: 711). October 1 through March 31, the
hours are 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., seven days a week. From April 1 to September 30,
the hours are Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Saturday 8 a.m. to
You must continue to pay your Part B premium. Blue Cross
& Blue Shield of Rhode Island is an HMO and PPO plan with a Medicare
contract. Enrollment in Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Rhode Island depends on