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Provider contract changes in Spokane affect members with Asuris, Cigna, and United HealthCare coverage

Effective December 31, 2019, Washington Permanente Medical Group (WPMG), formerly Columbia Medical Associates, will end its provider network contracts with Asuris, Cigna, and United HealthCare (UHC) for commercial and Medicare Advantage plans in Spokane. Members in Spokane who have primary health insurance coverage from these carriers must transition to a Kaiser Permanente Washington health plan or enroll with one of the commercial health insurance carriers that WPMG will continue to contract with — Premera Blue Cross or Aetna — to continue seeing their current Kaiser Permanente provider.

Medicare plan patients

  • Beginning January 1, 2020, patients aging into Medicare must choose a Kaiser Permanente Medicare Advantage health plan to keep seeing their current Kaiser Permanente provider. Original Medicare and supplemental insurance will not allow members to continue seeing their current Kaiser Permanente provider.
  • All UHC Medicare Advantage patients that reside in our Medicare service area and do not have end-stage renal disease (ESRD) have the option to move to the Kaiser Permanente Medicare Advantage health plan in order to retain their physician.
  • Kaiser Permanente physicians will continue to accept established patients who have Original Medicare Part A and B along with any supplemental coverage for those patients, even if they change supplemental coverage.
  • Kaiser Permanente physicians will not accept UHC Medicare Advantage patients who decide to return to Original Medicare Part A and B (with or without a Medigap plan or other supplemental coverage).

Commercial plan patients

  • Some affected commercial patients may be able to choose Kaiser Permanente coverage, depending on the options offered by their employer.
  • Patients who have the choice to enroll with Premera Blue Cross and Aetna will be instructed to contact those health plans directly to ensure their plan selection covers their current provider.
  • Patients currently on a group plan that uses the First Choice Health network may continue to seek care from their Kaiser Permanente provider. Kaiser Permanente providers are part of the First Choice Health network.

Secondary coverage

  • Kaiser Permanente physicians will continue to accept and bill any secondary carriers for all established patients who have primary coverage with Kaiser Permanente, Premera Blue Cross, Aetna, Original Medicare, or group plans with the First Choice Health network.

 

Health plans accepted in 2020 by Kaiser Permanente physicians in Spokane for established patients:

MedicareKaiser Permanente Washington plans offered by Kaiser Foundation Health Plan of Washington
Kaiser Permanente Medicare Advantage (HMO) offered by Kaiser Foundation Health Plan of Washington
Original Medicare Part A and B with or without Medigap or other supplemental coverage
Commercial (employer-based, individual and family)Kaiser Permanente Washington plans offered by Kaiser Foundation Health Plan of Washington or Kaiser Foundation Health Plan of Washington Options, Inc.
Premera Blue Cross
Aetna
First Choice Health network
OtherMolina Healthcare Apple Health (Medicaid)
Tricare for Life

 

Washington Permanente Medical Group is currently notifying patients affected by these changes. They also mailed letters to Original Medicare members letting them know there are no changes for them in 2020 and that they can continue to see their Kaiser Permanente provider.

If you have any questions, please contact your sales representative.

All plans offered and underwritten by Kaiser Foundation Health Plan of Washington or Kaiser Foundation Health Plan of Washington Options, Inc.

© 2019 Kaiser Foundation Health Plan of Washington