11 Ways Your BCBSRI Benefits Can Help During COVID-19
You have a lot to deal with right now, and we’re here to help. The benefits and programs available through your BCBSRI Medicare Advantage plan can help protect your health—and make your life easier. We're even temporarily expanding Medicare Advantage plan benefits due to the public health emergency associated with COVID-19.
1. $0 temporary benefits help you access the care you need
We’ve temporarily expanded many of your benefits so they are covered at $0 from August 17, 2020 through December 31, 2020.
- $0 primary care provider copays – now across all plans
- $0 mental health/substance use disorder copays
- $0 inpatient hospital, mental health, and observation stays
- $0 diagnostic labs, X-rays, and imaging – now across all plans
- $0 physical therapy, occupational therapy, and speech therapy
- $0 pulmonary and cardiac rehabilitation
- $0 Tier 1 prescription copays – now across all plans
- $0 most insulin drugs1
- $0 most inhalers1
- $0 Part B infusion and injection drugs
- $0 dementia drugs
How to get started: Simply use your benefits as you usually would.
2. $0 telehealth lets you visit with a provider right from your home
With BCBSRI Doctors Online, you can receive 24/7 care for common, non-emergency health issues such as colds, allergies, or migraines. You can also schedule video visits with a therapist or psychiatrist for behavioral health issues such as stress, anxiety, or depression. You can video chat with a board-certified doctor or licensed therapist right from your smartphone, tablet, or computer.2
In addition to Doctors Online, you can temporarily receive treatment for $0 over the phone or through video from providers you typically see in person, when clinically appropriate.3
Telehealth is especially important if you are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19. You should not go to a doctor’s office, urgent care center, or emergency room without contacting your doctor first (except in a medical emergency). Your doctor can direct you to the best place for testing or treatment. Doctor’s offices in Rhode Island are now open for in-person appointments that are not related to COVID-19 and are following specific procedures to keep patients safe.
How to get started: Registering for Doctors Online is quick and easy—and it’s a good idea to sign up before you need it. Download the BCBSRI Drs. Online app on the App Store or Google Play4 or visit drs-online.com. Be sure to have your BCBSRI member ID handy. To have a telehealth visit with your local provider, call their office to see if they are offering visits by phone or through video.
3. $0 COVID-19 testing makes care more accessible
To help ensure that you get tested if needed, you are covered for clinically appropriate COVID-19 testing ordered by a provider, and you do not need preauthorization or a referral.
How to get started: You can find information about testing sites on the Rhode Island Department of Health website.
4. $0 rides to your doctor make in-person visits more convenient
It’s important to get the care you need from your doctor to protect your health—and sometimes that means having a healthcare visit in person. Each year, you can get up to 24 one-way trips5 to or from your doctors. We’ll even coordinate your trips. To protect your safety, drivers wear masks and follow state guidelines regarding COVID-19.
How to get started: You can call 1-888-510-2227 to book a ride through a ride specialist or log on to rideqhub.com to book a ride directly. Wheelchair accessible vans are also available and can be selected upon booking the ride.
5. $0 mail order drugs help you avoid trips to the pharmacy
Receiving drugs through the mail can be convenient at any time, but it’s especially important now if you’re trying to limit your trips to stores—and you want to keep a supply of your medications on hand. Pay $0 copay6 for a 90-day supply of many generic drugs in Tiers 1 & 2 and enjoy free standard shipping.
How to get started: Call 1-855-457-1205 to sign up.
6. An extra $100 in your CVS Pharmacy® over-the-counter (OTC) benefit helps you keep supplies on hand
In the fourth quarter, you’ll get an extra $100 added to your OTC benefit to use on health-related items like cold remedies and personal care items, including fever-reducing medications, vitamins, and wipes. It is redeemable online, over the phone, or in person—however is most convenient for you. The quarterly OTC benefit ranges from $25-$200, depending on your plan. To find out how much your OTC benefit is, please check this flier.
How to get started: Visit bcbsri.otchs.com.
7. $0 meal deliveries help you focus on getting better
When you get home from an inpatient hospital stay—whether for an illness or a scheduled procedure—the last thing you need to worry about is cooking. That’s why you can get up to a week’s worth of meals (14 meals) delivered to your door up to four times a year. We’ve also added a temporary meal benefit for members diagnosed with COVID-19, who can receive two weeks’ worth of meals (28 meals). The meal benefit is available to all members with a COVID-19 diagnosis, even without a hospital stay.
How to get started: Call Independent Living Systems7 at 1-833-853-8946 (toll free) Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. and provide your BCBSRI member ID number.
8. Free virtual fitness classes from Your Blue StoreSM help you stay active
To help you stay healthy at home, we are now offering virtual fitness classes live on the BCBSRI Facebook page at 10:00 a.m., Monday through Friday. If you can’t make the live classes, we invite you to view the videos anytime on the BCBSRI Facebook page. Here is the schedule:
- Monday – Balance & strength
- Tuesday – Core
- Wednesday – Strength & tone
- Thursday – Stretch & relax
- Friday – Cardio dance
How to get started: Visit the BCBSRI Facebook page.
9. $0 fitness memberships can help you stay healthy at the gym or at home
Gyms are opening back up with certain restrictions. If you want to join a gym, you can take advantage of our enhanced $0 national gym benefit called Silver&Fit® and select from over 14,000 fitness centers across the country. Choose from more than 45 local fitness centers, including most of the YMCA and Anytime Fitness locations in Rhode Island. If you’d rather work out at home, you can take advantage of Silver&Fit’s virtual classes—no registration needed.
How to get started: Go to SilverandFit.com to register or call toll-free 1-877-427-4788 (TTY/TDD: 711), Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.
10. No-cost BCBSRI wellness app helps you stay active and relieve stress
With the BCBSRI wellness program, powered by Virgin Pulse8, you can participate in healthy challenges, find tips for coping with stress, and track your activity level, weight, sleep habits, and moods. The app also offers yoga and mindfulness programs.
How to get started: Sign up at join.VirginPulse.com or download the Virgin Pulse app from the App Store or Google Play.4 Choose Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Rhode Island as your sponsor, then connect your Max Buzz or other wearable device.
11. No-cost Blue365 discount program helps you save big on health and fitness
Blue365®9 offers members-only savings on health and fitness gear, gyms, meal services, and much more. There’s no charge to register, and you can sign up for email alerts tailored to your preferences, so you’ll never miss out on a great deal.
How to get started: Check out the savings at Blue365.
For more information on your benefits related to COVID-19 and to find helpful resources, please see our Keeping You Well and Well-Informed site.
1Please ask your pharmacy or provider if your drug qualifies.
2In the case of an emergency, you should always call 911. Doctors Online is not intended to replace these services and should not be used in those circumstances. Doctors Online is a telemedicine service provided by American Well®, an independent company that administers Doctors Online on behalf of BCBSRI.
3Temporarily covered at $0 until the benefit change expires—subject to change.
4Apple and the Apple logo are trademarks of Apple Inc., registered in the U.S. and other countries. App Store is a service mark of Apple Inc. Google Play is a trademark of Google Inc.
5Available within our service area for HMO & HMO-POS plans only/PPO plan has out-of-service benefit of 50% coinsurance/trip. Any trip over 20 miles will count as additional trips and will be subtracted from your 24 trip total. Rides are provided to your PCP and specialists only.
6Your actual savings depend on the drugs you take. Available with all plans except BlueCHiP for Medicare Core.
7Independent Living Systems is an independent managed care services company contracted with BCBSRI to provide nutritional support services.
8Virgin Pulse® is an independent wellness company, contracted by Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Rhode Island (BCBSRI) to provide wellness services.
9©2000‐2020 Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association ‐ All Rights Reserved. The Blue365 program is made available by BCBSRI in conjunction with the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. The Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association is an association of independent, locally operated Blue Cross and Blue Shield Plans.