|Anthem Blue Cross And Blue Shield Introduces International Medical Tourism Pilot Program
Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield in Wisconsin (Anthem)
said it will launch a new international medical tourism pilot product
that will allow members to access benefits for certain common elective
procedures at designated facilities in India.
Anthem began piloting the program in January with
Serigraph Inc., a Wisconsin-based global provider of printed decorating
Under the pilot program, Serigraph members planning to
undergo certain procedures can enjoy access to an extended network of
respected hospitals and healthcare providers in India. By electing to
use the international benefit, members can receive care at accredited
facilities at lower out-of-pocket costs for common non-emergency
procedures that could result in thousands of dollars in total savings.
The pilot program includes coverage of certain common
non-emergency procedures such as major joint replacement, upper and
lower back fusion, and other procedures that have significant cost
differences between domestic and international providers.
"Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield in Wisconsin is
committed to finding innovative solutions to our nation’s
healthcare challenges, and we are continually evaluating new concepts,"
said Dr. Michael Jaeger, managing medical director for Anthem in
Wisconsin. "Increasingly, our employer clients have expressed interest
in accessing foreign providers as a means to reduce their claim
expenditures, because they see medical tourism as a promising option
for improving access to affordable, quality healthcare. "
Members who choose to access this international option
will have a dedicated case manager who will coordinate all medical
arrangements, including scheduling and concierge travel service. All
travel arrangements will be booked and paid for, for both the member
and a travel companion. The case manager will also help make
arrangements for any necessary post-operative care upon the
member’s return to the United States.
All hospitals within the international program are
accredited by the Joint Commission International, whose accreditation
standards are based on international consensus standards and set
uniform, achievable expectations for structures, processes and outcomes
for hospitals. The program also complies with American Medical
Association guidelines for medical tourism.
Address: Blue Cross Blue Shield of Wisconsin, 401 W. Michigan St., Milwaukee, WI 53203; (414) 226-5000, www.bcbswi.com.