YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – There is still no deal between Mercy Health and Anthem. Putting it plain and simple: they disagree about reimbursement rates.
That means for thousands of Ohioans, coverage at Mercy Health facilities will be an out-of-network expense starting Oct. 1.
It applies to retirees or Medicare-eligible seniors on that plan. Just in Mahoning and Trumbull County, over 15,000 seniors use Anthem Medicare Advantage plan and Mercy doctors or hospitals. They’ve gotten letters about the change.
Craig Villwock with TLC Insurance is helping seniors find a solution. He said everybody uses some kind of Mercy hospital or doctor in the area and they will be affected.
“They will be affected and need to take notice that they’re on an Anthem Medicare Advantage plan,” Villwock said. “They want to keep their doctor and hospital, period. And so they’re going to find a way to do that, and our job is to help them figure out a way to sort through all the different options and find a plan that fits their needs the best.”
There are options available right now, and some of them allow for people to switch plans, starting when the coverage could change on Oct. 1. TLC is helping people look at the plans so they can make their own decisions.
“Talk to somebody: a local Medicare broker that knows what they’re doing, has been in business for a while that knows the Special Election Periods and can advise them and guide them on what their options are now, for like the October 1 effective date, and also what their options may be for 2024,” Villwock said.
Villwock said in the case of an emergency, you don’t need to worry. Anthem Medicare Advantage members could still use Mercy Health hospitals.