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Title Issued Date

2023 Small Group Package Update

Broker News | June 2022 | Vol. 17 No. 6

The following SimplyBlue Plus packages will no longer be offered directly through Excellus BCBS or on the New York State of Health (SHOP) Marketplace beginning January 1, 2023. Blue On Demand will be updated for package comparisons. The packages that will no longer be...

Important: Brand Use Request Process

Broker News | June 2022 | Vol. 17 No. 6

Brokers and agents must request use of our Excellus BlueCross BlueShield brand. This includes anything from our logo on your website, to mailings, collateral or advertising you create. To make it easier to request use, we’ve created an overview, guidelines, and a request...

Excellus BCBS Provides 65 Community Health Awards To Area Nonprofits

Broker News | June 2022 | Vol. 17 No. 6

Excellus BCBS is awarding a total of 65 community health awards to nonprofit organizations across upstate New York. The community health award funding will support innovative programs and solutions to advance health equity and ultimately improve health outcomes for...

Make A Mid-Year Resolution To Be More Active

Broker News | June 2022 | Vol. 17 No. 6

According to the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC), physical activity is one of the best things people can do for their health, both physical and mental. Not only does physical activity help people immediately feel better, function better, and sleep...

Updates To Our Professional Employer Organization Guidelines

Broker News | May 2022 | Vol. 17 No. 5

Excellus BCBS has made the following updates to our Professional Employer Organization (PEO) guidelines, allowing for more flexibility in the market for PEO business. Beginning with groups effective January 1, 2023, a PEO may choose to insure co-employees in two ways: ...

Individual & Small Group – NYS Prior Approval Of Rate Changes

Broker News | May 2022 | Vol. 17 No. 5

On May 10, 2022, an application was submitted requesting 2023 premium rate changes in accordance with New York state prior approval law. This rate application applies to Community Rated Individual and Small Group products. The following products are included in this 2023...

Not-For-Profits Invited To Submit Maternal Health Care Project Ideas For Funding

Broker News | May 2022 | Vol. 17 No. 5

Excellus BCBS is asking the community to submit ideas, for its Member and Community Health Improvement (MACHI) funding, that specifically targets maternal health programs and access to comprehensive maternal care within its 31-county upstate New York coverage area. ...

Calm E-Book For Brokers And Groups

Broker News | May 2022 | Vol. 17 No. 5

We worked with Calm to create a new informational resource to help Groups and Brokers with some of our most asked questions. It’s a great tool if you’re looking for: Registration Instructions Sample HR Email template Member FAQs Links to additional Calm resources...

Updates To Our Enrollment Tools

Broker News | May 2022 | Vol. 17 No. 5

We are always looking for ways to improve our online tools and resources to give our brokers, groups, and members a better user experience. In the coming weeks and months, you will see updates to our online enrollment and support tools. One update you will see soon, is...

Sun, Safety & Hydration

Broker News | May 2022 | Vol. 17 No. 5

As the weather gets warmer and people spend more time outside, it is important to stay hydrated and protect yourself from the sun. Drinking plenty of water every day is good for overall health any time of year. Getting enough water every day is even more important when...

COBRA Terminations For Non-Payment Of Premiums Will Resume July 1, 2022

Broker News | May 2022 | Vol. 17 No. 5 - Special Issue

In March 2020, the Department of Labor (DOL), together with the Department of Treasury and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) (collectively “Agencies”), issued final rules and, in February 2021 and July 2021 subsequent guidance with respect to the extension of certain...

Coming In February

Broker News | January 2022 | Vol. 17 No. 1

Beginning next month, Hinman Straub, our external legal counsel, will be providing a legislative update for our brokers. Our first update will include: 2021 recap of legislation signed into law 2022 NYS budget COVID policy moving forward Additional sessions are...

Enrollment Inquiry & Support Updates

Broker News | January 2022 | Vol. 17 No. 1

Updates to our Enrollment Inquiry & Support tool are scheduled to go live on February 7. Users who login and contact us by using the Enrollment Inquiry & Support tool will have access to new features that will enhance the support process from start to finish. ...

Leadership Updates

Broker News | January 2022 | Vol. 17 No. 1

We are excited to share the following changes to our leadership team:   Excellus BlueCross BlueShield Cindy Langston Named First Female Chief Information Officer Cindy Langston has been named senior vice president and the company’s first female chief information...

2021 Diversity Equity And Inclusion Report Available

Broker News | January 2022 | Vol. 17 No. 1

We are proud to share our inaugural, “Diversity Equity and Inclusion Report, Bringing I.D.E.A. to Life,” which details our approach to mitigating the impact of bias, and our commitment to equitable treatment for all, within and beyond our walls. Our Corporate Commitment...

Tax Form 1095-B

Broker News | January 2022 | Vol. 17 No. 1

Health insurers—including Excellus BCBS—are no longer mailing tax form 1095-B to members. Because taxpayers are not required to include the form when filing their taxes, the IRS no longer requires us to mail the form. Members can still download the form or request it by...

February Is American Heart Month

Broker News | January 2022 | Vol. 17 No. 1

February is American Heart Month, a time to spotlight heart disease which is the #1 killer of Americans. Yet heart disease is largely preventable by living a healthy lifestyle: eat a healthy diet, get regular physical activity, manage stress, don’t smoke, and get enough...

Healthy NY Updates

Broker News | January 2022 | Vol. 17 No. 1

Based on NYS changes, the Healthy NY New Business Application and Healthy NY Recertification have been updated to reflect the new maximum annual wage of $45,450.00 on all systems including Blue On Demand. The cutoff for using prior versions of the form will be May 1,...

COVID Treatment Benefits Ending On 12/31/21

Broker News | December 2021 | Vol. 16 No. 12

Please remind your groups that COVID treatment benefits will be ending on December 31, 2021. Beginning January 1, 2022, COVID treatment benefits will process according to the member’s benefits.  

Online Billing For Brokers Update

Broker News | December 2021 | Vol. 16 No. 12

We will be launching Online Billing to all Brokers in early January. We will post an alert on our website when the tool is available. If you currently have access to enrollment for a group, you will be given access to billing for that group under the same account. ...

Enhancements Made To Find A Doctor

Broker News | December 2021 | Vol. 16 No. 12

We continue to work to give our members the best user experience possible when it comes to our digital tools. Our Find A Doctor tool recently received the following enhancements to take advantage of in-app features such as: Location services Mapping capabilities ...

An Ounce Of Prevention…

Broker News | December 2021 | Vol. 16 No. 12

Are your employees regularly seeing their doctors for preventive care? Regular preventive care can help reduce the risk or severity of chronic conditions like heart disease, cancer, and diabetes. According to the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC), 90...

Excellus BCBS Welcomes Dr. Gina Cuyler

Broker News | December 2021 | Vol. 16 No. 12

In keeping with its mission to ensure access to high quality health care and reduce health disparities, Excellus BlueCross BlueShield announced that Gina Cuyler, MD. has joined the health plan as Vice President Health Equity and Community Investments. In this new role,...

Sending Our Thanks This Holiday Season

Broker News | December 2021 | Vol. 16 No. 12

As we come to the end of another year, we once again want to thank you for your partnership as we continue to help our shared clients navigate through these unprecedented times. We wish you and your families a safe and healthy holiday season. We hope the communities we...

New Individual Market COBRA Special Enrollment Period Effective January 1, 2022

Broker News | December 2021 | Vol. 16 No. 12

On May 5, 2021, CMS released the Notice of Benefit and Payment Parameters (NBPP) for the 2022 plan year final rule, and it included a new/modified qualifying event for a special enrollment period (SEP). The existing SEP for Involuntary Loss of Minimum Essential Coverage...

Member ID Card Update

Broker News | November 2021 | Vol. 16 No. 11 - Special Issue

As we previously communicated, because of the Consolidated Appropriations Act (CAA) of 2021, we will be reissuing many Member ID cards for January 1, 2022. To ensure cards are efficiently issued, please send us your enrollment as soon as possible or notify us as to when...

2022 Individual Market Plans

Broker News | November 2021 | Vol. 16 No. 11

Our SafetyNet and Individual Market Sales Team is ready to assist brokers during the upcoming 2022 Open Enrollment Period. If you have a client who is not eligible for an Employer Group Plan, Medicare, or Qualified Health Plan offerings, we are here to support you....

2022 Product Update: Calm® App And Blue Simplicity

Broker News | November 2021 | Vol. 16 No. 11

Great news! The Calm® App now has full contract finalization and New York State Department of Financial Services (DFS) approval. Additionally, DFS has approved Blue Simplicity for fully insured large groups with effective dates of 1/1/22 and later. Calm® App Finalized...

Recipients Of 2021 Health Equity Awards Announced

Broker News | November 2021 | Vol. 16 No. 11

Excellus BCBS announced the recipients of its 2021 Health Equity Awards. The awards represent more than $388,000 in financial support we are providing to community programs that address racial and ethnic health disparities across our service area. The funding will...

Coping With Winter And Holiday Blues

Broker News | November 2021 | Vol. 16 No. 11

As the days get shorter and the temperatures colder, some people may notice they feel down or have less energy than usual. This could just be the winter blues caused by less activity, or stress or sadness related to the holidays. Daylight, exercise, healthy eating, and...

Changes To Member ID Cards

Broker News | October 2021 | Vol. 16 No. 10 - Special Issue

Both New York State and the federal government have mandated changes to health insurance member identification cards. Beginning November 1, 2021, we will begin sending member cards in compliance with the federal mandate that takes effect January 1, 2022. Federally...

Excellus BCBS Achieves 5-Star Rating For Two Of Its Medicare Plans

Broker News | October 2021 | Vol. 16 No. 10

Among the highest in the nation and upstate New York. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) annual Star Ratings for 2022 has awarded Excellus BCBS five-star ratings for two of its Medicare plans, making it among the highest rated Medicare plans in the...

Coming Soon – Online Billing For Brokers

Broker News | October 2021 | Vol. 16 No. 10

We have started our pilot program and will be rolling out Online Billing to all Brokers in the coming months. With Online Billing you will be able to: Access all your group’s billing information under one login View and download your group’s invoices View your...

Annual Rate Notices Being Mailed

Broker News | October 2021 | Vol. 16 No. 10

Groups will receive Annual Rate Notices (ARNs) at the end of October. This includes: Small Group Products Large Group HMO Individual Medicare Advantage, Simply Prescription and Dental prospective pooled group notices and rates will be issued and viewable in...

Update To Small Group Medical Underwriting Guidelines

Broker News | October 2021 | Vol. 16 No. 10

Small Group medical underwriting guidelines have been updated and are available on our website and on Blue On Demand. Please reach out to your dedicated underwriter or account representative with any questions. View the Updated Guidelines  

Excellus BCBS Inside Rx Prescription Discount Card

Broker News | October 2021 | Vol. 16 No. 10

Excellus BlueCross BlueShield continues its mission of helping people in our communities live healthier and more secure lives through high-quality and affordable health care access. As part of that ongoing commitment, we’re excited to announce that we have partnered with...

Update To COVID Treatment Benefits

Broker News | October 2021 | Vol. 16 No. 10

Excellus BCBS will continue to cover IN-NETWORK COVID treatment benefits for fully insured members in full through December 31, 2021. Self-funded groups that previously opted-in will be given the choice to extend that option through December 31, 2021.  

November Is Diabetes Awareness Month

Broker News | October 2021 | Vol. 16 No. 10

November is Diabetes Month, a national observance designed to raise awareness about the risk factors, symptoms, types of diabetes, and the impact this disease has every day on millions of Americans. According to the American Diabetes Association®, Diabetes is the seventh...

Broker OE Content Now Available On The Sales Hub

Broker News | September 2021 | Vol. 16 No. 9

2022 Open Enrollment presentations are now available on Sales Hub. Some topics you can review include: Broker Commission Strategy for New Business Small Group Product Updates (Large group updates were released in June) 2022 Small and Large Group OE Updates from Sales...

Coming Soon! Online Billing For Brokers

Broker News | September 2021 | Vol. 16 No. 9

Earlier this year, we launched a new online bill pay tool for your groups. Soon, brokers will have access to online billing as well. Beginning in mid-October, brokers will be able to: Access all Group billing information under one login View Group invoices View...

Revised Waiting Period Policy

Broker News | September 2021 | Vol. 16 No. 9

We understand that employers may be looking for ways to position themselves more competitively in the current hiring environment. Health insurance is often a key component of employee benefit packages. From now until January 1, 2022, employers may change their new hire...

2022 Community Rated, Small Group Medicare Advantage Rates/Plans Now Available

Broker News | September 2021 | Vol. 16 No. 9

You can now view 2022 Community Rated, Small Group Medicare Advantage Plans on Blue on Demand. Blue on Demand allows you to compare plans and access your group's 2022 benefit summaries and rate sheets. Please contact your Group Medicare Sales Consultant with any...

Medicare Annual Notice Of Change Mailing

Broker News | September 2021 | Vol. 16 No. 9

This month, group benefit administrators with Medicare Blue Choice (HMO-POS) or Medicare Blue PPO (PPO) plans will be mailed an Annual Notice of Change (ANOC). The ANOC provides details on 2022 benefit changes. These members will receive their 2022 ANOC, along with their...

REMINDER: COBRA Subsidy Period Coming To An End

Broker News | September 2021 | Vol. 16 No. 9

The COBRA subsidy period will end on September 30, 2021. Groups will NOT need to take any action to return to standard billing in October and going forward. If a Group wants to terminate a COBRA enrollee, they will need to notify us. As a reminder, the American Rescue...

Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Broker News | September 2021 | Vol. 16 No. 9

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month an annual campaign to increase awareness of the disease. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about 255,000 women get breast cancer and 42,000 women die from the disease in the US every year. Here’s how...

Ready For Open Enrollment!

Broker News | September 2021 | Vol. 16 No. 9 - Special Issue

A new year means exciting new changes for your groups and their members—and even better coverage. Rates, plans, brochures, and product guides are all available now. What’s New for 2022 (PDF)  

Small Group Rates And Plans For 2022 Are Now Available!

Broker News | September 2021 | Vol. 16 No. 9 - Special Issue

Small Group plans and rates for 2022 are now available on Blue on Demand. Updated Open Enrollment tools, including At-A-Glance brochures and product guides are also available. Learn more and order open enrollment materials now. Now available: NEW! Blue Simplicity...

REMINDER: Large Group Open Enrollment Materials Now Available!

Broker News | September 2021 | Vol. 16 No. 9 - Special Issue

If you need printed copies of the 2022 Large Group Open Enrollment materials, you can order them at ExcellusForBusiness.com/GroupGuidesLG At-a-Glance Brochure Product Guide Just submit the quantity for each piece along with your shipping information and we’ll take...

Individual Metal Plans And Rates For 2022 Now Available!

Broker News | September 2021 | Vol. 16 No. 9 - Special Issue

Individual plans and rates for 2022 are now available on Blue on Demand. Updated Open Enrollment tools, including product placemats and product brochures will also be available. Now available: Individual Metal Level Medical Plans Blue Select Stand-Alone Dental Plans ...

COBRA Subsidy Period Coming To An End

Broker News | August 2021 | Vol. 16 No. 8

The COBRA subsidy period will end on September 30, 2021. Groups will NOT need to take any action to return to standard billing in October and going forward. If a Group wants to terminate a COBRA enrollee, they will need to notify us. As a reminder, the American Rescue...

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