April 21, 2020
Area(s) of Interest: Payor Issues and Reimbursement
Blue Shield of California recently announced it would be providing $200 million in direct support to physician practices and other health care providers. Today, the payor started accepting applications for the support, which will be offered in a number of categories:
- Loans: Blue Shield is providing up to $100 million in in provider loans. Loan amounts must not exceed $2 million. .
- Advance Payments: Blue Shield is providing up to $100 million in advance payments for contracted Blue Shield providers. There is a grace period of six months and must be repaid in full by 12 months either directly or through offset of future claims.
- Value-Based/Risk Sharing Contracts: Physicians can convert their contracts to value-based contracts (where available) or risk sharing contracts, which provide a monthly base revenue stream.
Providers can also opt to receive the patient cost-sharing portion of the bill at the time the claim is paid, eliminating the time and expense of collecting patient out-of-pocket costs.
The California Medical Association is encouraging interested physicians to apply as soon as possible, as the available funding is limited. For more information and to apply for the programs, email Financecommunication@blueshieldca.com
Blue Shield’s financial support for physicians shows a true commitment to the patients of California. During the COVID-19 pandemic, physician practices are confronting unprecedented operational and business challenges According to CMA’s statewide survey of physicians last week, 95% of physicians are worried about their practices’ financial health due to the financial stress they are experiencing as a result of the COVID-19 public health emergency.
“California needs to take additional steps now to ensure we have the physicians we need to deal with the second surge that will come when this crisis is over,” says CMA President Peter N. Bretan, Jr., M.D. “We hope that other plans will follow suit and do their part to protect patient access to care during this unprecedented crisis, and that we are prepared for what comes next.”