Getting Health Insurance

Choosing the Right Plan Type: Medical, Dental and Vision? Oh My!

“Once They Were One, Now They Are Three?”

Did you ever have health coverage through work? “Medical, dental and vision.” They seemed like a package deal, right? They may actually have been separate contracts or companies. Your human resources team just made them seem seamless. Front desk folks at the dentist and eye doctor would take your medical card. Then, “Voila!” they could often find details about whatever dental or vision coverage came “with it.”

Today, many people are buying health coverage on their own. What “comes with” medical coverage may be different than you are used to. You may want to buy dental and vision coverage as well as medical coverage. Think of it like being your very own buddy in human resources. Be sure to take a look at how dental and vision coverages work. They can be a little different than medical coverage.

What Does My Medical Cover for Dental and Vision?

Dental Details

Have you signed up for health coverage through Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois (BCBSIL), but not through your work? You may remember that dental coverage options are right there on our application. Dental benefits for BCBSIL individual members may include savings on preventive services like checkups, cleanings and basic X-rays. You can also save on dental work like fillings, bridges and crowns. Check your coverage details to see what your share of cost for preventive services savings on dental services may be.

Members can look up dentists who contract with BCBSIL in Provider Finder® through their Blue Access for MembersSM account. Remember you can maximize your benefits when you stay in network with your medical coverage? The same applies for dental coverage. Try to use in-network dentists to maximize your dental benefits. Also be sure to check your plan for details about what’s covered (or not), whether you see a network dentist or one who is out of the network.

Did you know that when you buy a health plan that covers your children under age 19, they’re signed up automatically for dental coverage for certain types of dental care? If you want to waive dental coverage for kids, you’ll need to sign a statement that says your children are covered through another plan. That’s because currently, under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), children have to have dental coverage too. It’s part of essential health benefits.

Vision at a Glance

Vision coverage looks a bit different.

Adult BCBSIL members are covered for one vision exam per year. Coverage amount varies by plan, and HMO members are only covered for a vision exam if they use an in-network provider. Members also have access to eyewear discounts through EyeMed. What if you will need more frequent exams or treatments for your eyes? You may want to get additional vision coverage from VSP Vision Care. You can sign up through Blue Access for Members.

All BCBSIL health coverage offered includes vision coverage for children under age 19. It’s not a separate policy and premium like dental is. Kids’ vision benefits include one full eye exam a year. Members also get either contact lenses or a pair of eyeglass frames. Just check if you need to meet your medical coverage deductible first to get the contacts or eyeglasses. You may also need to choose from certain kinds of lenses or frames.

What’s The Deal with Discounts?

Don’t forget that with your BCBSIL membership, you also may have access to more dental and vision discount offers through Blue365.

EyeMed is an independent company that administers the vision benefits for Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois.

Vision plans are offered by VSP Vision Care. VSP is an independent company that does not offer Blue Cross and Blue Shield products and services and is solely responsible for the products and services it offers. VSP Vision Care will pay commission fees on plans purchased to a company affiliated with BCBSIL.

Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois, a Division of Health Care Service Corporation, a Mutual Legal Reserve Company, an Independent Licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association

Blue Cross®, Blue Shield® and the Cross and Shield Symbols are registered service marks of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, an association of independent Blue Cross and Blue Shield Plans.

VSP is a registered trademark of Vision Service Plan.

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