While health insurance has a reputation for being complicated and cumbersome, digital innovations in the industry are making it easier than ever to manage health and improve quality of life. Just as many industries – transportation, hospitality, retail – are transforming their services to be more agile and convenient in response to consumer habits, the health insurance industry is adopting new technologies to make healthcare more accessible and beneficial to federal employees.
To get the most out of their healthcare, federal employees should look for these types of innovative services when choosing their next health plan:
Telehealth Services: Scheduling time for a doctor’s office visit can be difficult with busy work schedules – that’s why some health insurance companies are making it more convenient than ever to receive care. Providers are offering teleconsultations to treat minor injuries or illnesses such as colds, the flu, allergies, rashes, pink eye and bronchitis, among other ailments. With wait times as short as 10 minutes, members can use audio or video chat to consult with a U.S.-licensed healthcare professional around the clock. These healthcare professionals can provide medical advice, treatment options and referrals when necessary. Teleconsultations often cost less than a traditional doctor’s visit, and can also provide piece of mind for federal employees who spend time overseas or travel often in their role.
Fitness Trackers: In addition to providing coverage of healthcare services, forward-thinking health insurance companies are empowering members to embrace improved lifestyles and rewarding members for reaching different health milestones. Some providers are now offering ways for members to sync data from their personal fitness trackers to their online health insurance accounts as a way to monitor health goals and earn rewards. Syncing the information can help members keep track of physical activity and metrics such as body fat, blood pressure, calories burned and weight loss. Members can then set health objectives and log their progress on their health insurance account – receiving monetary benefits when they reach their goals.
Financial Dashboards: A visit to the doctor should never result in surprising financial burdens. To help members have a better understanding of healthcare costs and easily access spending information in real time, health insurance providers are offering financial dashboards that enable members to see all financial data in one place – highlighting areas for cost savings. Members can easily see their deductibles, out-of-pocket costs, remaining covered provider visits, medical claims, pharmacy claims and year-to-date summaries all in one place.
Provider Accessibility: Finding a doctor or healthcare facility within network should be transparent. Some companies are now creating online directories that allow members to easily find doctors in their plan, urgent care centers, hospital facilities and in-network pharmacies. In addition, members can use these directories to find procedure cost estimates. Some of these directories also offer 24/7 nurse lines to help members decide on the best place for care and to receive health advice.
Mobile Applications: While many health plans have a mobile application to manage account services, some apps provide more value than others. New apps go beyond just accessing accounts, allowing members to find providers on the go, call help lines easily and quickly see updates to benefits. With an exceptional app, members can view visit limits, access and share their member ID and stay updated on how close they are to meeting annual deductibles or out-of-pocket maximums.
Get the Most Health Insurance Has to Offer
When it comes to public service, federal employees need to feel their best to perform their best. Blue Cross Blue Shield is the health provider at the forefront of innovations in the field – offering members exceptional services, broadened access, and flexible plans to meet the needs of each individual. The Blue Cross and Blue Shield Service Benefit Plan is tailored specifically to the busy lifestyles of government employees and empowers federal workers to get the most out of their coverage. To learn more about this program, click here.
This content is made possible by Blue Cross Blue Shield. The editorial staff of Government Executive was not involved in its preparation.