MiBiz is now Crain’s Grand Rapids Business. Visit our new site at crainsgrandrapids.com

Published in Health Care
Priority Health’s Grand Rapids headquarters. Priority Health’s Grand Rapids headquarters. Credit: Priority Health

Michigan health insurers keeping preventative care coverage despite Texas court ruling 

BY Thursday, April 06, 2023 05:16pm

Priority Health and several other health plans in Michigan intend to maintain full coverage for preventative care for now.

That’s despite a ruling by a federal judge in Texas last week that struck down provisions in the federal Affordable Care Act that required health insurers to cover preventative care at no out-of-pocket costs to consumers.

“Preventive services save lives, lower costs and help members live happier, healthier lives,” Priority Health CEO Praveen Thadani said in a statement. “We are committed to supporting our members at every stage of their health and wellness journey, and that includes helping our members stay healthy through coverage of preventive services, not only treating them when they are sick.”

As the case is appealed, the Grand Rapids-based Priority Health joined other health plans today in announcing that it will continue 100 percent coverage for care such as physical exams, immunizations and vaccines, prescriptions that are considered preventive, well-child, and prenatal visits.

Priority Health, with 1.3 million members, also will continue full coverage for preventative tests for cholesterol and screenings for colon cancer, diabetes and osteoporosis.

Priority Health covered 100 percent of the costs for preventative care prior to the ACA and “will continue to offer these services, regardless of the recent ruling,” Thadani said.

Priority Health is among 17 health plans that Gov. Gretchen Whitmer said today have committed to retaining zero costs to members for preventative care, including Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan and HMO subsidiary Blue Care Network, Health Alliance Plan, Alliance Health and Life Insurance Company, Physicians Health Plan, UnitedHealthcare Insurance Company Inc.

Whitmer said the commitments apply to individual, small group, and large group policies.

“It is important for our members to know that their care and coverage does not change because of the court’s decision,” Dr. James Grant, senior vice president and chief medical officer at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, said in a statement. “Access to no-cost screenings, counseling services and preventive medications is critical to early detection, breaking down barriers to care and improving overall health. Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan supports maintaining these preventive services in place without cost sharing until all appeals to the court’s decision are finalized.”

Whitmer on Monday had ordered the Michigan Department of Insurance and Financial Services to work with health insurers on actions to maintain full coverage for preventative care.

The 17 health plans that committed to maintaining preventative care with zero cost to consumers are:

  • Aetna Life Insurance Company, Aetna Health of Michigan Inc.
  • Blue Care Network
  • Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan
  • Cigna Health and Life Insurance Co.
  • Health Alliance Plan
  • Humana Insurance Co.
  • Humana Medical Plan of Michigan
  • McLaren Health Plan Community
  • Meridian Health Plan of Michigan Inc.
  • Molina Healthcare of Michigan
  • Nippon Life Insurance Company of America
  • Oscar Insurance Co.
  • Physicians Health Plan
  • Priority Health
  • UnitedHealthcare Insurance Company Inc. and UnitedHealthcare Community Plan Inc.
  • US Health and Life Insurance Co.
  • Wellfleet Insurance Co.
Read 3324 times Last modified on Thursday, 06 April 2023 17:28