Doing Everything in Our Power During a Pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic had an unprecedented impact on Texans – from employers to health care providers to patients and their families. Tune in to this video to see how Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Texas stepped up to the challenge when their members needed them most. 

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DARRELL: You know, 2020 has been a very unique year. It goes without saying, know if you think about it, this is a pandemic, a hundred-year pandemic. No, one's had any practice at this. In March, you know, I moved my entire team from working in the office to working from home, which was concerning at first, but the team adjusted within days. It's been a tough year for all of our customers. We recognize the financial burden that many of our customers are under during this crisis. So we've taken a number of steps to, to address that. Uh, we've done premium credits, which is a reduction in their monthly premium. We've offered a waiver of employee and member co-chairs and deductibles for COVID testing COVID treatment. And then also telehealth services.

SHARA: We had to make sure that we could pay for those telehealth services. We had to change our claim system so that we, uh, issued payment appropriately to physicians. We also had to make sure physicians knew what was paid and knew that they could actually get paid for these telehealth services. And we actually encouraged it. We reached out to providers, we had webinars, or we had, uh, personal outreach. I know that we reached about 600 behavioral health providers. And overall we reached 2000 practices just to answer their questions, make sure they understand what the coding and payment rules were for Telehealth. And we also wanted to make sure that benefits were paid appropriately for telehealth services. Employees have really been able to help us with the pandemic. This is the first time we've ever done virtual volunteering. And we had over 200 employees volunteer their time virtually and their families to help build doggy bags for an organization that we've been a long-time community partner with called Patriot Paws.

SHENNA: We gave two, $1 million grants, one to the Texas restaurant associations education relief fund in which that grant helped provide over 35,000 meals to first responders and healthcare professionals across 121 counties. The second $1 million that we gave, went to the communities foundation of Texas. They were able to distribute 112 grants to organizations across 94 counties in the state. And that grant supported things like personal protective equipment and supplies that organizations needed to purchase feeding our senior population who was either vulnerable or in mobile and not able to get out of their home. And then another area that we funded was childcare for those first responders and healthcare professionals, because they were on the front line trying to ensure our safety,

DARRELL: The end of the day.  I'm really proud of our company and what we've done, and we've lived our purpose. We've done everything in our power to stand with our members in sickness and health. And that's what we're all about.