CHI St. Joseph and Texas A&M Health Network: New Lower-Cost Network Tier within the A&M Care Plan
The Texas A&M University System, CHI St Joseph Health Primary Care and the Texas A&M University Health Science Center have strengthened their partnership through the announcement of a lower-cost network benefit. The co-branded, primary care provider network improves the Brazos Valley community's access to health care while also training future clinicians. The partnership makes CHI St. Joseph Health a major clinical partner for Texas A&M in the Bryan-College Station area.
The "CHI St. Joseph and Texas A&M Health Network" will include 16 primary care locations and a large number of individual providers within Austin, Brazos, Burleson, Grimes, Lee, Leon, Madison, Robertson and Washington counties. The network includes a 75 percent reduction in primary care copays, a 50 percent reduction in specialty care copays and a 50 percent reduction in coinsurance costs at all CHI St. Joseph Health locations in the Brazos Valley. This translates to employee out-of-pocket costs for physicians and facilities contracted with CHI St. Joseph and Texas A&M of a $5 copay for a primary care physician, a $15 copay for a specialist and a 10% coinsurance for other costs such as a hospitalization. All other coverage will be the same.
You will see more about this new network tier as we get closer to the start date of June 15. The emphasis for communication will be here in Bryan/College Station, even though the new network benefits are available to all employees and retirees in the A&M Care plan. The tier will be outlined more specifically by ZIP code and/or provider list when it becomes available, but it can only be used in the Brazos Valley.
New Health Network Q&A
- When will the new Preferred Provider network be available?
The network will be available on June 15, 2018.
- Am I required to use the CHI/St. Joseph providers?
Each time you need to go to the doctor or health care facility, you have a choice of providers, either in or out of the new preferred provider tier.
- If I do decide to use a CHI/St. Joseph provider, must I keep using that physician?
Each time you need service, you may change your choice if you wish.
- How can I figure out who the lower-cost providers are?
At present, you can look for CHI/St. Joseph providers. Physicians who are part of the CHI/St. Joseph doctor’s group, those with a St. Joseph contract and Texas A&M University Health Science Center physicians will have the lower cost and copay. Beginning September 1, you will see these network providers clearly differentiated on the BlueCross BlueShield Provider Finder under the Brazos Valley Network.
- Why is the A&M System doing this?
The opportunity to partner with the Health Science Center, Texas A&M University and one of the local hospitals and physician groups presented itself. At the same time, it is also an opportunity to provide a new benefit to our employees and retirees.
- What if I live outside the Brazos Valley?
If you need or want to come to the Brazos Valley for care, you will get the lower cost for care from the network providers.
- What if I live in the Brazos Valley but use a provider outside the Brazos Valley?
Then you will be responsible for the normal A&M Care Plan copays, deductibles and coinsurance.