Coverage While Traveling

  • Your Provider Network

    Your medical plan offers nationwide and worldwide networks of providers to ensure you get the right care, at the right time, in the right setting. To receive the highest possible benefit coverage that your plan offers, always first check for in-network providers using the Find a Doctor tool before making an appointment.

    The BlueCard® program allows you to receive certain levels of medical-care benefits when you're traveling away from home. Of course, if you believe you have a medical emergency, call 911 or seek emergency care immediately, no matter where you are.

  • Your medical plan offers you access to networks of doctors, hospitals and other healthcare providers to save you money.

    • Statewide providers: In Washington and Alaska, the provider network is called Heritage.
    • Nationwide providers: When you travel or live outside of Washington or Alaska, you have access to a network of BlueCard “preferred” (PPO) providers who are contracted by Blue Cross Blue Shield Association plans across the country.

    Network providers will file claims for you and accept allowable charges for covered services.

    • With the Comprehensive Medical Plan, Medical Plus Plan and Consolidated Plan for Retirees you get the highest level of benefits and lowest out-of-pocket costs when you use a Heritage or BlueCard PPO network provider. You're responsible only for your coinsurance, copay, deductible and any charges not covered by your medical plan. If you decide to see a provider outside of these networks, your out-of pocket expenses may be higher.
    • When you travel, you have access to a network of BlueCard providers who are contracted by Blue Cross Blue Shield Association plans across the country.
    • The Basic Medical Plan pays benefits only when you use a Heritage or BlueCard PPO provider. You'll rarely have to worry about filing a medical claim because Heritage and BlueCard network providers have agreed to submit your claims for you. Claim payments are sent directly to the provider.
    • Heritage and BlueCard network providers can help you make informed decisions to get the medical care you need while keeping your out-of-pocket expenses to a minimum.

    When you need medical care:

    • Find a nearby Heritage or BlueCard PPO provider through the Provider Directory. You also can call 800-995-2420 to find a Heritage provider, or 800-810-2583 for a BlueCard PPO provider.
    • Visit the provider and show your member ID card.
    • At the time of service, you're responsible only for any applicable copays. The provider will file a claim with your medical plan for their charges. Once the claim has been processed, you'll receive an Explanation of Benefits detailing any amounts you owe.*

    If you need care that you or your doctor believes is not available in these networks, please call customer service at 800-995-2420, 5 a.m. to 8 p.m. Pacific, Monday to Friday.

    Please check your Benefit Booklet for details about your benefits and provider networks.

    Note: Blue Cross is the only preferred provider network for services in California and Idaho. If you visit a provider affiliated with Blue Shield, a separate company in these two states, it is considered out-of-network.

    *Deductible or coinsurance payments may apply.

    When you travel overseas or are living abroad, you enjoy the added advantage of Blue Cross Global Core®. This program offers access to an international network of participating doctors and hospitals for a broad range of medical care services.

    When you need medical care outside the U.S.:

    • If you need non-emergency medical care, call Blue Cross Global Core collect at 804-673-1177. The Blue Cross Global Core Service Center is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and is staffed with multilingual representatives. They can help coordinate hospital care or make an appointment with a doctor for you.
    • Visit the Blue Cross Global Core provider and show your medical plan ID card.
    • For all outpatient care, office visits, or prescriptions, pay the provider or pharmacy and submit a claim to Premera Blue Cross.
    • For inpatient hospital care that was arranged by the Blue Cross Global Core Service Center, the provider will file the claim. You only pay the out-of-pocket expenses required by your plan (deductible, copayments, coinsurance, and any non-covered services). If the hospitalization was not arranged by Blue Cross Global Core, you pay the provider and submit a claim to Premera Blue Cross.

    Note: For emergency care outside of the U.S., go to the nearest hospital. Call Blue Cross Global Core collect at 804-673-1177 if you’re admitted.