AP NEWS

Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield and Walmart Collaborate to Give Consumers Increased Access to Everyday Health-Related Products

November 13, 2018

DENVER--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Nov 13, 2018--Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield in Colorado (Anthem) will be working with Walmart to give 2019 Medicare Advantage (MA) plan consumers the ability to purchase over-the-counter (OTC) medications and health-related products through Walmart’s multiple shopping options, including in-store and online, using the OTC allowance available through one of its MA plans.

“Anthem strives to develop meaningful products and solutions that create a better healthcare experience for our consumers as well as improve their health and well-being,” said Josh Martin, President of Anthem’s Medicare West Region. “This initiative combines Anthem’s deep understanding of the needs of older adults with Walmart’s unwavering commitment to saving people money and developing a seamless shopping experience. We believe this agreement can make a significant difference for Medicare-eligible consumers who often live on a fixed income, manage chronic conditions, or both.”

Anthem will also offer an OTC allowance for one of its 2019 Medicare Advantage health plans. Individuals enrolled in the Anthem’s 2019 Medicare Advantage plan will be able to use this increased benefit to purchase OTC medications and health-related products, such as first aid supplies, support braces, and pain relievers.

The Anthem-Walmart program, launching in January 2019, and the increased OTC allowance are expected to reduce healthcare costs for individuals because both will help give consumers the ability to purchase more items through their health plan benefits since Walmart is dedicated to offering products at low prices. This may lead individuals in Anthem’s MA plans to buy fewer items on their own.

This collaboration is also designed to give people improved access to health-related products covered under this Anthem MA plan since more than 90 percent of Americans live within ten miles of Walmart’s more than 4,700 stores. Individuals have the option of shipping purchased items to their home or a nearby store when they shop on Walmart.com or use an app designed for this program.

These types of benefits can be important to older adults who seek more value for their money. According to the Social Security Administration, nearly a quarter of married seniors and four out of 10 unmarried older adults rely on their Social Security benefit, which averages just over $1,400 a month, for at least 90 percent of their income.

The following 2019 Anthem Medicare Advantage health plan will have an over-the-counter allowance at the amount shown for individuals to purchase OTC items:

Anthem MediBlue Dual Advantage (HMO SNP): $50 per quarter

Anthem believes consumers will see the value in shopping at Walmart to purchase the health-related products covered under their health plans – given the retailer’s commitment to value – but if an individual wants to use a different retailer, the company will have other shopping choices available that may better meet his/her needs.

For details about Anthem’s Medicare plans, consumers can call (855) 866-3979, which is available 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Friday, April 1 to Sept. 30; and 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. seven days a week, Oct. 1 to March 31. Consumers can also visit the company’s online store at https://shop.anthem.com/medicare.

Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield is an HMO plan with a Medicare contract and a contract with the Colorado Medicaid program. Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield is an HMO DSNP plan with a Medicare contract and a contract with the Colorado Medicaid program. Enrollment in Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield depends on contract renewal. This information is not a complete description of benefits. Contact the plan for more information. We do not discriminate, exclude people, or treat them differently on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, age or disability in our health programs and activities. ATENCIÓN: Si habla español, tiene a su disposición servicios gratuitos de asistencia lingüística. Llame al 1-888-230-7338 (TTY: 711). CHÚ Ý: Nếu bạn nói Tiếng Việt, có các dịch vụ hỗ trợ ngôn ngữ miễn phí dành cho bạn. Gọi số 1-888-230-7338 (TTY: 711). This plan is available to anyone who has both Medical Assistance from the State and Medicare. Other providers are available in our network. The provider network may change at any time. You will receive notice when necessary.

About Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield

Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield is the trade name of Rocky Mountain Hospital and Medical Service, Inc. HMO products underwritten by HMO Colorado, Inc. 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 and Blue Shield Association. Additional information about Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield in Colorado is available at www.anthem.com. Also, follow us on Twitter at www.twitter.com/anthemBCBS and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/AnthemBlueCrossBlueShield.

View source version on businesswire.com:https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20181113005085/en/

CONTACT: Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield in Colorado

Hieu Nguyen, 202-510-8848

hieu.nguyen2@anthem.com

KEYWORD: COLORADO NORTH AMERICA UNITED STATES

INDUSTRY KEYWORD: MANAGED CARE GENERAL HEALTH MEDICAL SUPPLIES CONSUMER RETAIL INSURANCE PROFESSIONAL SERVICES HEALTH DISCOUNT/VARIETY SENIORS

SOURCE: Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield in Colorado

Copyright Business Wire 2018.

PUB: 11/13/2018 07:05 AM/DISC: 11/13/2018 07:05 AM

http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20181113005085/en

AP RADIO
Update hourly