Florida health insurance can be a challenging area to navigate, and the pressure to get the perfect plan for your needs can feel immense. The inability to re-enroll for long periods of time, sometimes many months until the next open enrollment. While Florida Blue offers fantastic healthcare options, making your way through the ton of plans often can feel overwhelming.
What does Blue Options, Blue Care, and Blue Select even mean in Florida health insurance terms?
These three networks of the Florida Blue plan system comprise of the core of providers and facilities offered. In effect, they simply represent the network you’ll be joining with your affordable healthcare insurance, nothing more or less than that.
Blue Options, of all the Florida Blue packages, has the largest PPO network, and good out-of-network coverage outside the state of Florida and a ton of affiliated pharmacies. This network is in all 67 counties of Florida and has over 36,000 physicians participating. Also about 250 hospitals are inside this network, so you have lots of choices to be admitted where you want. Also, should you be referred to a specialist or special facility you have a much better chance that they would be inside the large PPO network?
Blue Care, however, is an HMO network and referrals are always needed from your primary care provider. There is no out of state coverage, except in the case of an emergency. This network is only available in the state of Florida in 35 of 67 counties, so make sure you live in one of those 35 counties so you can use the insurance plan.
Lastly, Blue Select offers the smallest network and does not include the major pharmacy chain, Walgreens. They do, however, offer out of state coverage,but go online and check the provider list before walking in just anywhere.
What Is A Network?
A network is nothing more than the groups of physicians, hospitals and service providers who offer lower rates through the plan and thus are covered by the plan. You’ll pay less by sticking to network hospitals.
Of course, this means it’s vital to check that your preferred doctor is covered within the network you choose, or you will be facing a lot of out of pocket medical bills. Fortunately, Florida Blue has a pretty comprehensive network directory online for you to check and see if your practitioner of choice is covered.
Always search online for doctors, hospitals, and specialists you are likely to use both for a minor issue and in an emergency. Also, check pharmacies you prefer to use. This can seem time-consuming to do, but in reality, a little legwork now will ultimately make your experience with FloridaBlue a much more affordable one.
You will also be able to find health insurance agents to help you through the sorting process if you really cannot face handling it yourself. Find out more tips here.
Many people forget their pharmacy coverage when choosing a Florida Blue plan. Remember that, while it is important to work with doctors and hospitals you can easily access, it is equally important to make sure you can access medication you need at a pharmacy conveniently located near you.
Therefore spend a little extra time to be sure that your pharmacy coverage is appropriate for your needs as well. Remember that not all chain pharmacies carry the same drug range, and you may prefer to stick with the brands you use already, so call around.
Finding affordable health care insurance can seem an overwhelming task, but it is not as bad as it appears, and Florida Blue’s website will help you considerably in ensuring you find the right plan for your needs and service area.