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Get the facts. Protect your health.

As coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) continues to spread globally, Blue Cross® Blue Shield® of Arizona (BCBSAZ) is here to make sure you have the services and support you need to protect your health.

As we put our emergency response plan in place, we are working with the Arizona Department of Health Services and other appropriate agencies to help prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus in Arizona.

Here you will find information about COVID-19, including symptoms, actions to take, benefit coverage updates, and resources to support you.


BCBSAZ Member Coverage Updates

COVID-19 Testing—No copay

COVID-19 testing is a covered benefit with all of our medical plans. What’s new is that members won’t have a copay or other cost share for COVID-19 diagnostic testing. Testing must still be ordered by a provider and performed according to CDC guidelines.

COVID-19 Testing and Treatment—No prior authorization required

BCBSAZ is waiving prior authorization (precertification) for diagnostic tests and covered treatment services that are medically necessary and consistent with CDC guidance for members who have been diagnosed with COVID-19.

Prescription Refills

  • Early refills of 30-day prescriptions that are taken for a long-term or chronic condition are available in almost all cases.
  • A 90-day supply is available to members whose plan offers mail-order pharmacy benefits. Many of our plans also cover 90-day supplies purchased at a retail pharmacy. Please check your plan documents online at azblue.com/MyBlue.
  • If there is a shortage of the medication a member takes, we will work with them and their doctor to identify an alternate option. If the alternate medication costs more than the original, the member won’t have to pay the additional amount.

Nurse Advice and Online Doctor Visits for BCBSAZ Members

Nurse On Call service is available to our members with questions or concerns about COVID-19 or another illness. Registered nurses are available 24/7 at 1-866-422-2729. Medicare Advantage members can call 1-888-905-1172.

BlueCare AnywhereSM is a 24/7 service available with most BCBSAZ plans that connects members to a board-certified doctor by live video. Members can use a computer, tablet, or mobile device to talk with a doctor online. This service can be used from home, work, or anywhere.

Our newest Medicare Advantage plans already include BlueCare Anywhere. We are looking at the possibility of making BlueCare Anywhere available for all of our Medicare Advantage members and our Medicare Supplement members. More information will be coming soon.

To make it easier for members who have this service, we are waiving the associated copay for the next 90 days. Members will pay $0 out-of-pocket from now through June 12, 2020, when they use BlueCare Anywhere.

Members can get started at BlueCareAnywhereAZ.com, or download the BlueCare Anywhere telehealth app.

How You Can Help Stop COVID-19

  1. Most important: Stay home when you’re sick.
  2. Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  3. Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.
  4. Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  5. Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  6. Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
  7. Know the signs and symptoms of COVID-19: fever, cough, shortness of breath.
  8. See more tips from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

It is VERY important to call your doctor’s office before going. The staff will be able to prepare the office to help protect other patients while you’re there. Your doctor will work with the local health department and the Arizona Department of Health Services to decide if you should be tested for COVID-19.

The CDC is tracking the COVID-19 outbreak around the clock and is a good resource for the latest information.

As we closely monitor the situation and review the data daily, we will update this page to help you protect your health.

BCBSAZ members may call the phone number on the back of their ID card with any questions about their coverage. The sections below have information on telehealth and coverage updates.

Additional Information

The CDC has specific guidance for travelers.

The Arizona Department of Health Services recommends calling your doctor or healthcare provider if:

  1. You’ve recently traveled to an area where COVID-19 is spreading and have developed a fever with cough or shortness of breath within 14 days of your travel; or
  2. You’ve had contact with someone who is suspected to have COVID-19.

Coronavirus: This term refers to a family of seven known viruses that can infect people. They range from coronaviruses that simply cause a common cold to the form that causes severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS-CoV), which emerged in Asia in 2002, and the even-deadlier Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS-CoV), which appeared in 2012. The name comes from the fact that under a microscope, the virus looks like a blob surrounded by crownlike spikes, a corona.

COVID-19: The new coronavirus itself is officially named SARS-CoV-2. The disease the virus causes in people—the fever, coughing, shortness of breath and, in severe cases, pneumonia and death—is named COVID-19. SARS-CoV-2 causes COVID-19.

Community transmission: Community transmission refers to cases in which a disease is circulating among people within a certain area who a) did not travel to an affected area, and b) have no close link to another confirmed case. Community transmission suggests the virus is spreading within a location in ways health officials have trouble tracking and containing.

Quarantine: Restricting the movement of people who seem healthy but may have been exposed to the virus is referred to as a quarantine. Americans who were evacuated from Wuhan and cruise ships, for example, were kept in strict quarantine on military bases for 14 days, which is what experts believe is the virus’ incubation period.

*Excerpted from The Washington Post.