From physician to president, McCoy remains in healthcare, a field dedicated to helping people. BCBSTX establishes the COVID-19 Community Collaborative Grand Fund to help feed the state’s healthcare workers and first responders. To support local restaurants, it donates to the Texas Restaurant Relief Fund. And, the company’s generosity continues with another donation to the Communities Foundation of Texas.
How are you coping amid the COVID-19 crisis?
Our focus from the start has been making sure our members have access to the care they need. We have monitored on a daily, sometimes hourly basis, the evolving dynamics of the virus to understand how it is impacting our members and Texas communities.
We started by quickly expanding coverage for medical and behavioral health telemedicine and telehealth visits, so our members could visit the doctor without fear of exposure to the virus during this crisis. We have chosen to enhance access to COVID-19 testing and treatment by waiving cost-sharing for our members, meaning they won’t pay copays, deductibles, or coinsurance for medically necessary COVID-19 related lab tests, doctor visits, and treatments.
We’re also making available a special enrollment period (SEP) for our insured group customers, so people can have an opportunity to get coverage for their health care needs in this time of uncertainty. We also launched an educational campaign to inform displaced workers about their health insurance options. Our members can keep up to date with all of our policy adjustments on our web website, BCBSTX.com/covid-19. We also encourage our members to seek treatment from in-network providers to avoid surprise bills and to call us for information about their specific benefits.
Did your business continuity plan work, or were there surprises?
Yes, our plan worked well. There are always going to be bumps along the way, but moving thousands of employees to work from home in a matter of days is no small task, and it was mostly a seamless transition. I’m proud of our staff for maintaining productivity while continuing to focus on our top priority, the health, safety, and well-being of our members, customers, staff, and the communities we serve.
Have you found silver linings in these difficult times?
Yes, Texans have a unique ability to pull together during tough times. BCBSTX has a long history of giving back to our communities, but during this time, we have worked with tremendous community partners to assist on the frontlines of this fight. We established the COVID-19 Community Collaborative Grant Fund and then donated $1 million to the Texas Restaurant Relief Fund.
Through this grant, we were able to work with two large chains to feed frontline healthcare workers and first responders across the state. So far, we’ve provided about 30,000 meals with many more to come. We also understand the importance of supporting local restaurants, so half of the funds are going directly to help local restaurants that, in turn, can support frontline healthcare workers and first responders with meals in their local communities.
Also, we donated $1 million to the Communities Foundation of Texas. The donation will be used to purchase additional personal protective equipment (PPE) for first responders, provide childcare for first responders and healthcare professionals, and cover services for senior adults like meal and grocery delivery all across our state.
Efforts like these are playing out all across Texas, providing resources where our neighbors need it most.