State of Alaska Changing Insurance Again

December 17, 2013 10:00 am2 commentsViews: 378

Brent Ursel PA-C

Effective January 1st, 2014, the State of Alaska will be changing their Third Party Administrator (TPA) for health insurance. Aetna Insurance has won the contract for the next few years.  Health Smart was the previous TPA .

State employees (current and retired) should start receiving their new insurance cards and welcome packets in the next week or two.  It is extremely important that you update your medical provider’s office and the pharmacy with your new insurance information to help streamline the insurance billing.

With the new TPA will come a few changes.  One change is likely to be the change back to Providence Hospital in Anchorage as the preferred facility for hospital stays, surgeries, MRIs/CTs, etc. (it was Alaska Regional).

Another big change is that the list of procedures requiring prior authorization is getting longer.  One  common procedure that will now need a prior authorization from the insurance company is a knee MRI. Failure to have something prior authorized could result in a denial of payment and stick you with a HUGE bill.

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Below is a link to the official press release from the state and also the welcome information from Aetna.

 

http://doa.alaska.gov/newsEvents/PR13-06-health-plan.html

http://doa.alaska.gov/drb/alaskaCare2014/transitionGuide.html

2 Comments

  • James A Krasnansky

    Hi, Brent. My understanding is that the law provides for annual TPA change. Is that your understanding?

    • Hi Jim,
      Don’t know about the law providing for an annual change. But, I can tell that that the state has been changing TPA’s about every 2 years in an effort to save a few dollars. Unfortuneately, sometimes the lowest bidder doesn’t always equal the greatest value.

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