Getting the Most from Your Benefits: Horizon Adds More Labs to Network to Help Lower Out-of-Pocket Costs
We all know the drill: You need a blood or urine test, so your doctor orders lab work and you go to a nearby lab to give your sample and have the test. Pretty straightforward – or is it?
By James Dell'Arena, Director, Network Operations & Medical Cost Strategy
Your doctor’s office may write your lab work prescription, but they may not tell you where to have it done. Where patients go for their lab work can actually make a big difference in terms of cost. One lab may charge twice or more what another will for the same test and if that lab is out-of-network, it can mean a surprise bill for a patient of hundreds or even thousands of dollars.
To help members reduce their out-of-pocket costs, avoid getting stuck with high, surprise out-of-pocket lab bills and make it easier to find in-network labs, Horizon BCBSNJ expanded its lab network on January 1, 2019.
To get the most out of your insurance plan, here are some Do's and Don’ts to remember next time you or a family member has to visit a lab.
Do..visit HorizonBlue.com and look at the Clinical Lab Services page. This web page includes information on all of the labs now in-network with Horizon BCBSNJ.
Do…be careful to select the right lab for your plan. Three labs participate in Horizon’s network - BioReference Laboratories, LabCorp, and Quest Diagnostics- but not all labs partcipate in every plan. That’s why checking is so important. Visit www.HorizonBlue.com to make sure you match your plan with the right lab.
Do…ask your doctor whether any lab work they perform in the office will be done by a lab that is in-network with Horizon. Sometimes a doctor will send lab work taken in the office to a lab that isn’t in Horizon’s network. You can avoid that happeing by asking your doctor up front.
Don’t…go to a lab that is out of Horizon’s lab network, or you may be hit with a big, unexpected bill. At a minimum, you will pay higher out-of-pocket costs. But, it’s also important to remember that even if your plan includes insurance benefits for out-of-network labs, the higher charges Horizon pays to those out-of-network labs increases premiums for everyone.
Don’t…think finding an in-network lab is difficult. More than 90 percent of our members live less than ten miles from an in-network lab.You can locate one near you on Horizon BCBSNJ’s Doctor and Hospital finder. Some labs offer online appointments, which adds to the convenience of visiting a Horizon BCBSNJ network lab.
Don’t…hesitate to contact Horizon if you have a question or need help. Visit www.HorizonBlue.com or use the new HorizonBlue app to chat with a customer service representative or email in your question.
Don’t...know about the new HorizonBlue app? Our new HorizonBlue app makes getting the most from your Horizon BCBSNJ health insurance even easier. Find an in-network lab or doctor, check your coverage, manage your benefits, chat with a nurse or even have a telehealth visit with a doctor with just a click on your phone. Simply text “GetApp” to 422-272 to download the app or search for “HorizonBlue” in the Apple or Google app stores.