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Insurer makes changes for those affected by Chimney Fire

Anthem Blue Cross today announced temporary revised medical and pharmacy guidelines to help members living in Lake and San Luis Obispo counties who are directly impacted by the Clayton and Chimney wildfires.

The revised guidelines will help Anthem Blue Cross members who are impacted by the wildfires access needed medical care and prescription drugs. Members affected and in need of medical attention should seek medical assistance wherever it is available and have their medications refilled at any pharmacy. In addition, impacted members in Lake and San Luis Obispo counties seeking emergency and urgent services will have access to out-of-network providers at in-network benefit levels when in-network providers are unavailable due to wildfires.

For impacted members, Anthem Blue Cross is:

Allowing members to get emergency or urgent care services from doctors and hospitals, even if they are not in their plan network — and claims will be paid at in-network coverage levels.
Relaxing time limits for prior authorization, pre-certification or referral requirements — there will be no late penalties. Suspending early refill limits for prescriptions and permitting members to have their prescriptions refilled at any pharmacy. Also, members who utilize mail-order pharmacy benefits can update address information by calling the number on the back of their membership card.
Allowing replacement of medical equipment or supplies. Extending filing deadlines for claims.

These adjusted medical and pharmacy guidelines are effective immediately and will remain in effect through August 22, 2016 (unless extended). With the exception of emergency or urgent care or refilling lost or damaged drugs, members who are impacted by the wildfires must call the number on the back of their membership card to request any of the above adjustments be made to their benefits.

These adjusted medical and pharmacy guidelines do not apply to Medicare Part D, Medicare Advantage and Federal Employees Health Benefits Program. Members of those plans have specific guidelines.

For additional questions, members should call the phone number on the back of their membership card. Also, members are encouraged to access benefits information through the Anthem Blue Cross mobile application. Finally, LiveHealth Online is a convenient way to have live video conversations with doctors and is available to anyone who needs non-emergency medical care when their own doctor is not available. Services can be accessed by logging on to or using a free LiveHealth Online app that can be downloaded on an iOS or Android smartphone or tablet.

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