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Navigating Your Blue Cross Blue Shield Coverage: A Guide for Potential Clients

Welcome to Steffen Counseling Services! We understand that navigating your insurance coverage can be confusing, so if you have questions about your coverage, read on. Specifically, if you have Blue Cross Blue Shield (BCBS) insurance, it’s important to be aware that it can be administered through two main subsidiaries in the Pacific Northwest: Regence and Premera. We want to make sure you have a clear understanding of the the BCBS world, so in this post, we’ll explain these distinctions and guide you on how to check your coverage to see if it’s administered by Regence or Premera.

If you’re looking for information regarding couples therapy, check out our blog post to learn more.

Understanding Blue Cross Blue Shield: Regence vs. Premera

Blue Cross Blue Shield (BCBS) is a widely recognized insurance provider in the United States. In our region, it’s administered through two key subsidiaries: Regence and Premera. The choice between these two can significantly affect your therapy costs and accessibility.

Here’s Why It’s Important

Being “in-network” with an insurance provider means we have an established agreement with that insurer, which allows you to access our services at a reduced cost. In our case, we are in-network with Premera plans only. This is a crucial detail, because it means that if your BCBS coverage is administered through Premera, you can take advantage of our services while minimizing your out-of-pocket expenses, but if it runs through Regence, we are out of network.

Checking Your BCBS Coverage: Regence or Premera?

To make the most of your BCBS insurance and benefit from our in-network status, you need to determine whether your coverage is handled locally by Regence or Premera. Here’s how you can do that:

  1. Check Your Insurance Card: Start by taking a look at your BCBS insurance card. The card may clearly state whether your coverage is administered by Regence or Premera. Look for the subsidiary’s name and contact information. While this is a good start, it is not a guarantee that your mental health coverage runs through Premera, and many cards only say BCBS, without referencing additional details
  2. Reach Out to BCBS: If the information on your card is unclear or if you have any questions, don’t hesitate to call the number on the back of your insurance card to inquire about your behavioral health benefits. Your insurance company should be able to assist you and confirm the subsidiary responsible for your coverage. You’re specifically asking about behavioral or mental health- some plans have healthcare through Premera, but mental healthcare through another company.
  3. Online Portal Access: Many BCBS members have access to an online portal where you can manage your insurance. Logging in to this portal can provide you with detailed information about your coverage, including the name of the subsidiary. To see if Steffen Counseling Services (SCS) is in-network with your plan, search using our NPI2: 1578147823. Make sure you’re not searching by your therapist’s name, as your provider may not be listed separately from SCS.
  4. Contact Us: Feel free to reach out to our practice directly, and we can check our records to see if your specific plan is on our list of in-network plans. While we have a small list of plans that we have confirmed that we are in-network with or out of network with, it’s not a long list- but we can always check for you. For example, we know that we are out of network with BCBS Federal, and BCBS Boeing, and in-network with most Lifewise and Heritage plans. SCS is a small company, so we do not currently do insurance verification, and we can’t call your insurance company on your behalf.

What If Your Plan Runs Locally Through Regence? 

If you find out your plan runs through Regence, you can request superbills for out of network insurance reimbursement, and can use Nirvana’s reimbursement calculator (scroll down to the bottom of the page) to find out what your reimbursement rate and deductible will be. If your insurance plan is included in Nirvana’s database, you’ll be able to pull all the details you need to plan for treatment costs in advance, and before your intake, we’ll send you a Good Faith Estimate with a breakdown of every one of our service costs.

Our Goal

We want to ensure that you have a smooth and cost-effective therapy experience with us. Understanding the difference between Regence and Premera when it comes to your BCBS coverage is the first step in that direction. While SCS can never guarantee coverage, even if your card says Premera, by checking your insurance and getting confirmation either way, you can make informed decisions about your therapy journey.