They will do so under a provision of the federal health overhaul that forces them to offer refunds if they don’t spend enough of the premium dollars they take in on health care.
The concept of an insurance company giving members the means to shop around for the best price on a procedure is new, and UPMC is one of the first to try out WebMD’s program.
The move was a result of Highmark’s ability “to negotiate more aggressive discounts with the pharmacies that remained in the network, resulting in savings for Highmark’s employer groups and members,” said Highmark in a statement.
The average annual premium for family coverage through an employer is 9 percent higher this year than last year.
Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield announced that will provide free wellness classes to members through their new Wellness Where You Live program. In partnership with local organizations, a variety of classes will be available to members and nonmembers in Allegheny County.
The pilot program is beginning at Pinnacle-owned family practices in Lower Paxton Twp. and Marysville.
Under the current payment system, doctors get paid for patient visits, but not much of the related administrative work.
Blue Cross of Northeastern PA and Aetna are among those that will be implementing the program more quickly than required.
Rising insurance costs have consequences for taxpayers, teachers and students.
Local governments are unsure of how they are going to continue providing coverage for employees.