Healthcare Reform: Interactive Tool Helps Consumers

Healthcare Reform: Interactive Tool Helps Consumers-Image via Wikipedia

Individuals and employers can now tap into “AskBlue Healthcare Reform,” an interactive, online tool developed by the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association (BCBSA), to learn about the new healthcare reform law.

AskBlue Healthcare Reform, available at www.askbluereform.com, provides a simple, straightforward explanation of healthcare reform.  By answering just a few simple questions, AskBlue Healthcare Reform offers users personalized information about the changes that will be most meaningful to them.  At the end of the experience, users receive a summary of what they’ve learned, the option to print or email their summary, as well as access to additional resources, such as www.healthcare.gov and www.medicare.gov.

Business owners looking to understand how reform will impact their business and their employees can also utilize AskBlue Healthcare Reform’s business tax calculator to help determine if the business is eligible for a healthcare tax credit and understand other financial implications.

“AskBlue Healthcare Reform is a critical resource to help consumers understand what the new healthcare law will mean to them,” said Scott P. Serota, president and CEO of BCBSA.  “This new resource is another example of BCBSA’s strong commitment to helping consumers make informed healthcare decisions.”

AskBlue Healthcare Reform joins a suite of interactive tools developed by BCBSA to help consumers understand their healthcare options.  “AskBlue,” was launched in June 2009 to help individuals who are uninsured, unemployed, have lost their employer-based coverage, or are not eligible for group benefits find individual coverage options that fit their personal needs and budget.  “AskBlue en Espanol™,” its counterpart for Spanish-speaking consumers, debuted in August 2010.  “AskBlue Medicare,” which helps older Americans, people with certain disabilities and their families better understand Medicare and their options, and “AskBlue for Federal Employees” from the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Government-wide Service Benefit Plan (also known as the Federal Employee Program or FEP®) debuted this fall.

The AskBlue Healthcare Reform tool is available to all consumers nationally.  To learn more about the AskBlue suite of tools, visit www.bcbs.com/askblue/.

About AskBlue(SM)

AskBlue provides consumers with healthcare information based on information you provide during the session.

AskBlue, Your personal guide to healthcare coverage options® provides a general overview of certain insurance options, for Blue products only.

AskBlue Medicare, Your guide to understanding healthcare coverage options(SM) provides information developed by Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association to help consumers understand certain aspects about Medicare.  Viewing AskBlue Medicare does not require you to enroll in any Blue products.  For more information about Medicare, you may also contact the Medicare program at 1.800.Medicare or www.medicare.gov.

“Medicare has neither reviewed, nor endorsed, this information.”

AskBlue Healthcare Reform, Your personal guide to understanding the basics of reform(SM) provides a general overview of certain aspects of healthcare reform, based on the relevant legislation and guidance as of the date this AskBlue program was created.  This overview is intended to provide general information only, and not legal or financial advice of any kind; local interpretation may vary.  Specific information and updates on healthcare reform may be found on the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ website at www.healthcare.gov.  Remember, healthcare reform is complex and certain changes may not be applicable to you or your business at all, or may not be applicable immediately but may be implemented over several years.

AskBlue for Federal Employees(SM) is a tool designed to help you decide which Blue Cross and Blue Shield Service Benefit Plan option is right for you.  AskBlue for Federal Employees will only provide recommendations on available Service Benefit Plan products, not products available to federal employees through other insurance carriers.  Certain information you enter while using this tool, such as age and zip code, will be used to better understand ways to improve the Service Benefit Plan product offerings and benefits, not to recommend a particular product.

Each AskBlue tool is an overview that provides general information only, and does not provide legal or financial advice of any kind.  It is not an application for insurance or an offer to provide or guarantee insurance coverage.  To find out about insurance rates and terms for these and other insurance options, how to apply for coverage, and for much more information, contact your local Blue Cross or Blue Shield company.  Each Blue company is responsible for the information that it provides.  Viewing and using AskBlue does not require you to enroll in any products offered by Blue Cross and/or Blue Shield Plans (Blue Plans).

The Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association is a national federation of 39 independent, community-based and locally-operated Blue Cross and Blue Shield companies that collectively provide healthcare coverage for more than 98 million members – one-in-three Americans.  For more information on the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association and its member companies, please visit www.BCBS.com.

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