Member Perks / Making it easy

Your Plan Can Help With Fairy Gardens (and More)

Linda Kivisto, BCBSRI Medicare Advantage member, and granddaughter

At 78, Linda Kivisto stays young by spending time with her grandchildren and great grandchildren. “My granddaughter and I spend hours out in the yard, planting flowers and taking care of our fairy garden. It brings us great joy, but it’s harder for me than it used to be,” Linda said.

To make it easier to spend time in her garden, Linda uses a back brace that she bought with her over-the-counter benefit through her BCBSRI Medicare Advantage plan. “Since the pandemic, I go out as little as possible, so I use the over-the-counter benefit to buy everyday things like Tylenol, toothpaste, bandages, and even a back brace. I do it online.”

Linda said her plan makes it easy for her to focus on the things that are most important. “BCBSRI has done a wonderful job incorporating benefits that we need besides medicine and doctors. If you need someone to take you to the senior center or the library, you can get a ride. I really appreciate that they thought about what will make our lives easier.

A member for life

Linda has only had her BCBSRI Medicare Advantage plan for two years, but she’s had such a great experience that she describes herself as “Blue Cross forever.”

“Every year, I would check around to make sure I have the right plan, and I had seen a BCBSRI ad about how the plan had worked for other Rhode Islanders,” Linda said. “When I called, the coverage was better than what I had, so I decided to switch.”

Linda said, “I spent 36 years working in customer service, so I really appreciate good customer service. Once when I contacted BCBSRI with a question, the person I talked with sent me a thank you note! I should have been sending her a thank you note. In addition to solving my issue, she told me about all the benefits available with my plan.”

That’s how Linda first learned about the over-the-counter benefit as well as other convenient benefits she now uses all the time. "I also use the mail order pharmacy because it’s easy, and I don’t have to go out as much. There is no deductible, no cost for the drugs, and I get a 90-day supply.”

The things that matter

Linda lives with her daughter but loves that her plan helps her stay independent. “I know there will come a point when I need her help more, but I want to put that off as long as I can. With their plans, BCBSRI is really thinking about our quality of life and helping us maintain as much dignity as we can. That matters so much to me, and I’m sure to other people too.

Make your life easier 

Want to know more about the benefits Linda mentioned? Take advantage of all your plan has to offer at Or call our local Medicare Concierge team at (401) 277-2958 or 1-800-267-0439 (TTY:711).