For individuals and families who travel more than 100 miles from their home, WHA plan members will be eligible for assistance with medical consultations and referrals from Assist America at mywha.org/travel. There is also a 24-hour nurse line to answer general health questions and referral to nurses with more specific knowledge of disease management.
Counseling Services with Magellan Health – Free, confidential counseling services are available to all WHA members. Magellan will also assist members with referrals to local non-profit organizations, shelters and additional community-based support to assist individuals as they work to cope with the feelings of fear, sadness, anger and hopelessness related to these kinds of natural disasters.
Western Health Advantage (WHA) has announced that the Department of Managed Health Care has approved their expansion for small group plans into the Bay Area. They also noted that they will not seek re-certification of their Covered California small group plans because of this expansion. WHA’s exit from the Covered California for Small Business plans does not affect their individual and family plan offerings through Covered California.
Northern California–Bay Area employers will have an opportunity to receive outstanding healthcare at an affordable cost, thanks to a new agreement between Canopy Health and Western Health Advantage. HMO benefit plans for employer group health coverage from Western Health Advantage (WHA) will offer access to the Canopy Health alliance of providers and hospitals effective January 1, 2018, subject to regulatory approval.
UC Davis Health made this unilateral decision due to today’s challenging and uncertain healthcare climate. They determined the high cost structure of their academic medical center is no longer compatible with a regional HMO like WHA, whose business strategy is to be a market leader in affordability.
The California Office of the Patient Advocate (OPA) has released their health plan quality report cards in time for the 2017 open enrollment period. Now in its 16th year, the 2016/2017 OPA Health Care Quality Report Cards are available online at www.opa.ca.gov. This timely release of the Report Cards is critical as consumers prepare in making the important decision of choosing a new health plan for themselves and their families during 2017 open enrollment. Quality matters when consumers choose a health plan or medical group, and this free tool helps ensure they have the information they need to make an educated decision.
Covered California has released their 2017 Regional Rate and Plan Information summary. This summary has a more in-depth focus specific consumer market information than does their 2017 Health Plan Booklet. While the target audience is Certified Application Counselors and Agents, there is also some very useful information for consumers.
We are happy to announce that with these benefit changes, groups will experience minor impact to their rates. On average over all plans and regions, we have an increase of 1%.