Founded in 1945, Premera Blue Cross is the subsidiary of BlueCross BlueShield that offers services in Washington and Alaska.
It offers a good variety of health plans with access to a 24/7 nurse hotline and telemedicine. You can also manage your plan conveniently through an online account.
Health plans are divided into three metal tiers:
Bronze plans typically have lower premiums with higher out-of-pocket expenses. Gold plans usually have higher premiums but lower out-of-pocket expenses. Silver plans are in the middle.
All plans listed on the Health Insurance Marketplace offer the benefits required by the Affordable Care Act, which includes coverage for preventative and emergency care, prescriptions, maternity and pediatric care, outpatient, and hospital care, and behavioral and rehabilitative treatments.
Premera also offers employer-sponsored group plans for large and small businesses. It also offers Medicare Advantage plans and Medigap plans, but the company doesn't say much about providing Medicaid.
Premera makes it easy for members to manage their accounts and understand the basics of their health plans. Through your account, you can pay your bill online (or via phone or mail), view your ID card, see how much of your deductible you've met so far, view the benefits of your health plan along with an explanation of how they work, and check the status of a claim. You can easily renew your claim, find and download forms, and go paperless so that all your account activity is online.
One of the best things about being a Premera member is all the discounts you're entitled to on health products, like food serivices, eye glasses, laser vision correction, gym memberships, and more.
Several features make Premera stand out among competing health insurance providers. One of these is their mobile app, which helps you find a provider, view your account activity and benefits, and show proof of coverage while you're out.
The 24/7 nurse and Teledoc access are convenient! Premera focuses all its efforts on Washington and Alaska, which also makes it unique.
Only with Premera will you get the BlueCross BlueShield benefits with customized service for the Pacific Northwest region.
Along with all the member discounts on health products, Premera has Silver&Fit, another discount program that involves getting a gym membership for free for those with Medicare.
At the core, Premera values customers as people and has the company mission to anticipate customers' needs and respond to them. It values integrity and teamwork and wants your health care experience to be a positive one. Premera wants you to feel secure, not confused, which can so easily happen in this industry.
Customers can contact Premera via phone, mail, email, social media, and, of course, in-person visits. Customer service here is not available 24/7, only during business hours.
However, the service you do get is quality, if not quantity. Members can track claims 24/7 as well, and the mobile app and online account make account management so much more convenient and fast. Because of them, you can prove your coverage at the doctor's office or hospital, and you can check the status of a claim or deductible at your own convenience.
Because Premera is a BlueCross BlueShield subsidiary focused on these two states, the company has a bit more of a local feel, which is often helpful for customer service as well. It can provide information specific to your state.
Premera has minimal customer reviews on Best Company, which makes it difficult to draw conclusions about the customer experience. Although most of Premera's reviews are negative, a clear picture of how customers feel about Premera is not possible due to the limited number of reviews.
One thing Premera doesn't really have is a phone number dedicated to member services. If you call customer service, it will just prompt you to get to member services from there. There isn't 24/7 customer service either, although members do have access to a 24/7 nurse line.
Teledoc gives members round-the-clock access to a physician via phone or even video! An innovative feature, Teledoc allows you to ask quick questions to a doctor without going through an official appointment (although official appointments are still recommended for certain conditions).
This can be seen as a pro or a con, but Premera only has health plans in two states: Washington, and Alaska. For residents in these states, this is a pro because it gives the company expertise in that area and a somewhat local feel for an insurance company. It's a con for everyone else, though, and it also means their network is much smaller than nationwide companies. Premera's network is made of about 27,000 providers.
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