Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield's New Medicare Supplement Plans Offer More Choice and Financial Flexibility to Wisconsin's Growing Medicare Population

Tuesday, May 25, 2010 General News
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MILWAUKEE, May 24 Today, Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield in Wisconsin (Anthem) announced new "modernized" Medicare Supplement plans that have been updated to consider the needs of today's Medicare beneficiaries.

Anthem's new Medicare Supplement plans will offer a portfolio of options ranging from comprehensive coverage that bridges Medicare gaps, to the availability of packages offering low monthly premiums and more predictable co-pay structures that encourage wellness by making doctor's visits more affordable ($20 office co-pay and $50 ER) for beneficiaries. In Wisconsin, consumers can select the new base Medicare Supplement plans and available riders including the Part B co-insurance rider, which offers a lower premium. Consumers can purchase these plans with an effective date of June 1, 2010.

"The updates to the Medicare Supplement health benefit plans are welcome news for Medicare beneficiaries during these tough economic times, because the plans align the benefits with the recent updates made to the Medicare program," said Krista Bowers, president of Anthem's Senior Business. "The new 'modernized' Medicare Supplement plans offer peace of mind, practicality and affordability that is in tune with today's Medicare landscape."

The new Medicare Supplement plans are a result of the Medicare Improvements for Patients and Providers Act (MIPPA) of 2008 that authorized a new set of Medicare Supplement insurance plans to reflect the needs of today's Medicare beneficiaries.

A Medicare Supplement policy (sometimes referred to as Medigap) is a supplemental health insurance plan sold by private insurance companies to fill the "gaps" in Original Medicare Plan coverage. Medicare Supplement policies help pay some of the health care costs that the Original Medicare Plan doesn't cover. If an individual is enrolled in the Original Medicare Plan and has a Medicare Supplement policy, then Medicare and Medicare Supplement will pay both their shares of covered health care costs. Anthem and its affiliated health plans are the second largest provider of Medicare Supplement health benefit plans in the nation.

Although as of June 1, 2010 the current Medicare plans referred to as "standardized" plans will no longer be open for new sales or new membership, Medicare beneficiaries who are currently enrolled in a "standardized" or "pre-standardized" Medicare Supplement plan can retain their current plans as long as their premium payments are current.

About Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield

Benefits underwritten by Blue Cross Blue Shield of Wisconsin, an independent licensee of the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association. ® ANTHEM is a registered trademark of Anthem Insurance Companies, Inc. The Blue Cross and Blue Shield names and symbols are registered marks of the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association.

SOURCE Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield in Wisconsin

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