Seniors across the state of Michigan may soon be able to take advantage of a new Medicare program that will be offered by Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan for 2010. The new program, Medicare Plus Blue PPO, is a Medicare Advantage PPO product that offers participants lower premiums than the Original Medicare option as well as Part D drug coverage and supplementary insurance coverage.
The new Medicare Advantage PPO product will be replacing two current products offered by Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan: Options C and D, which are Private-Fee-For-Service (PFFS) Medicare Advantage options. The eliminated programs are being eliminated because of a combination of government funding reductions that coincide with an increase in medical costs for program participants in Michigan. In some cases, the medical cost increases for Michigan participants has been twice as high as the average cost across the nation.
According to Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, replacing the two expensive products helps to ensure that program participants will be able to avoid facing large premium increases. However, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan will keep two of its other two Private-Fee-For-Service products: Medicare Plus Blue Options A and B, though premiums for these two remaining products may increase.
What can participants expect from the two new Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan products?
First, they will be able to take advantage of a large network consisting of more than 18,000 physicians and 136 hospitals in Michigan. The program will be available in 75 of Michigan’s 83 counties as well. Moreover, there are additional services that will be provided by the Medicare Plus Blue PPO that are not provided by Original Medicare or Medicare Supplement plans, including coverage for routine physicals, preventative dental services, total body skin exams, prescription drug coverage, worldwide emergency care coverage, and more.
Participants interested in enrolling in this new Medicare Plus Blue Plan need to change their current plans during the Medicare open enrollment, which begins next month on November 15 and lasts through December 31. During this open enrollment period, any changes they make to their Medigap insurance will begin to take effect in 2010.
This new Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan option is just one of the many Medicare Advantage plans available. Are you looking for information about Medicare Advantage programs that may help be right for you? For help finding the best Medicare program for your situation, contact Medigap Advisors at 866-323-1441.