Since March, WellCare of Illinois, has waived pre-authorizations, co-pays, and other costs related to COVID-19 testing, screening and medically necessary treatment. We also have waived prescription refill limits, and members are able to refill prescriptions prior to their refill date during this crisis.
As seniors face increased social and economic barriers to care amid the pandemic, we are now offering a number of expanded benefits to help our eligible Medicare Advantage members address issues such as out-of-pocket medical costs, food insecurity, and medication assistance.
Effective July 1, 2020, expanded benefits will include:
- $0 Member Liability Extension – We are waiving in-network member costs for all primary care visits for the rest of 2020. We are also waiving member costs for outpatient, non-facility-based behavioral health visits and are extending telehealth cost share waivers for all telehealth visits—primary care, specialty, and behavioral health—for in-network providers for the remainder of 2020. This does not include inpatient hospital, behavioral health facility, or urgent care visits. Medicare members with state benefits will continue to receive support through coordination with their states.
- Extended Meal Benefits – Members eligible for meal benefits due to a chronic condition or recent discharge may receive an additional 14 meals delivered to their home at no cost.
- Increased Annual Wellness Visit Incentives – Members may be eligible for an increased incentive for completing their Annual Wellness Visits, a benefit offered at no cost to the member.
- Additional Over-The-Counter (OTC) Benefits – Plans with an OTC benefit may now receive additional allowance dollars in monthly or quarterly increments, adding up to as much as $150 for the remainder of 2020, depending on plan.
- Access to WellCare’s Community Connections Help Line – The Community Connections Help Line – a toll-free line provided by our partners at WellCare and available to anyone in need – is staffed by peer coaches and support specialists who can refer individuals and caregivers in need to a database of more than half a million social services in local communities across the country. By calling the line at 1-866-775-2192, members can also receive help coordinating of the expanded meal program benefits, OTC allowances, and annual wellness visit incentives via the line.
Beginning July 1, 2020, providers should waive the member liability for the eligible primary and behavioral health care claims at the point of service, and forego the collection of the member cost share. This is a benefit change for our members and our claims system will be configured to administer these adjusted benefits. We recognize that providers have different reimbursement/accounting arrangements with us, and the costs associated with this benefit change will follow the accounting processes as outlined in the provider’s contract with WellCare of Illinois. For services rendered to Medicare members with state benefits, providers should continue to collect that member cost share from their State Medicaid Agency as per usual.