Making Informed Decisions

BHT Introduces New Virtual Plus Plans Through Kaiser Permanente

With its focus on providing high-quality, affordable employee benefits, Business Health Trust is proud to announce the new Virtual Plus HMO plans available to members enrolled in medical through Kaiser Permanente.

Starting in 2021, the Business Health Trust Small-Group Program will include two new options that feature fully covered virtual care visits: Virtual Plus Silver and Virtual Plus Gold plans.

These unique plans are a good option for employees who want affordable care and the convenience of starting most care online. Available in King, Pierce, Snohomish, Spokane, Kitsap and Thurston counties, the new Virtual Plus plans feature the following highlights:

  • Low monthly premiums.
  • No charge or referral needed for virtual care, first in-person primary care visit, and all preventive care.
  • Get virtual care through 24/7 Care Chat online messaging or nurse phone line, scheduled video visits and phone appointments, e-visits, or email for nonurgent questions.*
  • Virtual visits are with Kaiser Permanente doctors and clinicians — the same ones you’d find in our medical facilities.
  • Fill the first prescription for a new medication at an in-network pharmacy or mail order. Get most refills and maintenance medications through mail order. Delivery is free and usually takes 1 to 2 days.
  • Includes worldwide in-person emergency and urgent care coverage.
  • Care at Kaiser Permanente walk-in clinics is not considered urgent care and requires a referral in order to pay a lower out-of-pocket cost.

The Business Health Trust Small-Group Program is available to employers with up to 50 employees, offering scalable, competitive benefits for even the smallest companies. To learn more or to get a quote, contact info@businesshealthtrust.com or fill out our Request a Quote form.

*When appropriate and available.

Open Enrollment Resources to Help You Find the Right Health Plan at the Right Cost

Business Health Trust offers more than health insurance — we are also a resource, offering small employers in Washington state the information and tools they need to design and manage a competitive employee benefits program.

With open enrollment now under way for many businesses around the state, Business Health Trust strives to help you stay informed with resources from our partners at Washington Health Alliance.

Need help selecting a health plan that attracts talent and keeps your employees healthy and productive — at a budget you can afford? The Washington Health Alliance’s following video on Getting the High-value Care you Deserve is a great place to start.

For more resources, consider articles such as:

Learn more at ownyourhealthwa.org.

Video chat with male doctor

BHT Expands Virtual Care Access Through Premera Blue Cross in 2021

Business Health Trust (BHT) is making it even easier to visit with a doctor in 2021 with expanded access to virtual care for members enrolled in medical through Premera Blue Cross.

Instead of planning your life around provider access, take advantage of this reimagined network that significantly increases access to primary and hard-to-get specialized care.

No matter where you are, you can get the right care quickly through the following integrated virtual care offerings for BHT members enrolled in medical through Premera:

  • 98point6: Text-based primary/urgent care from a doctor, 24/7.
  • Doctor on Demand: Video and phone-based primary/urgent care and mental health therapy.
  • Talkspace: Video and phone-based mental health therapy.
  • Boulder Care: Treatment for opioid use disorder and alcohol use disorder. Video visits and messaging with a therapist.
  • Workit Health: Treatment for opioid use disorder and alcohol use disorder. Live chat and video with a therapist.

Business Health Trust’s 17 different medical plan designs through Premera Blue Cross come with a variety of value‑added benefits, including embedded life/AD&D insurance and employee assistance program (EAP), which offers additional access to virtual counseling through BetterHelp.

To learn more or to get a quote, contact info@businesshealthtrust.com or fill out our Request a Quote form.

Important Employment Law Update Available from Archbright

With our focus on helping small businesses navigate the complex word of health insurance and employee benefits, Business Health Trust would like to share an important resource from our partners at Archbright:

Free Webinar Recording: Pacific Northwest Employment Law Update 

Each year brings changes in employment and labor laws affecting employers, which is perhaps the only way 2020 is a typical year.

In this recorded webinar, Erin Jacobson, Director of Legal & HR Advice, and Joy Sturgis, Content Manager, review employment and labor law updates in 2020 at the federal level and those relevant to employers in Washington, Oregon, and Idaho.

Learn more and register at Archbright.com.

This valuable opportunity is available free of charge, and a great way to discover how Archbright’s HR, safety and legal advice could complement your business.

Through our exclusive partnership with Archbright, Business Health Trust members receive free access to Archbright’s online resources, as well as discounts on upgraded subscriptions.

For more information on Business Health Trust or how to access your Archbright membership, email info@businesshealthtrust.com.

Event: Value-Based Care Virtual Summit

Please consider joining this free virtual event from our partners at Washington Health Alliance:

Event: Value-Based Care Virtual Summit
Date: November 12, 2020
Time: 8:30-11:30 a.m.

Featuring keynote speaker Donald Berwick, MD, MPP, FRCP, the free virtual Value-Based Care Summit will examine obstacles and barriers to change for all stakeholders, and actively promote and support a more rapid acceleration of value-based payment models across our state.

For more information and to register, visit the event site.

Kaiser Permanente Keeps Members Informed as Flu Season Nears

Even though flu season doesn’t usually peak until December to February, this year Kaiser Permanente is urging its Business Health Trust members to get vaccinated before the end of October.

Kaiser Permanente’s updated Flu Q&A can get you up to speed on what’s new for the 2020-2021 flu season, but one of the biggest changes is that this year, flu shots are available by appointment only at in-network provider offices and in-network pharmacies.

More information will be shared at Kaiser Permanente’s next webinar in its COVID-19 series, from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Monday, October 5, 2020, on “What to expect this flu season and supporting caregivers through the pandemic.” Topics will include:

  • COVID-19 updates and trends – New insights on the current state of the pandemic
  • What to expect this flu season – How COVID-19 compares to other pandemics and outbreaks, and why flu prevention matters more than ever
  • Supporting caregivers through the pandemic – The additional challenges faced by employees who are also caregivers, and how you can help make things easier

Learn more about how you can protect yourself and others by getting a flu shot in this Kaiser Permanente Flu Shot flyer that can be posted in your office, home or other communal space.

4 Ways to Protect Your Eyes from Wildfire Smoke

From our wellness partners at VSP Vision Care Inc.

With the onset of wildfire season, decreased air quality could leave your eyes feeling like allergy season is back. Symptoms affecting the eyes such as itching, red, burning and watery eyes can all be caused by smoky air conditions.

Limit your exposure to smoke and prevent eye irritation with the following tips:

  • Use lubricating eye drops or artificial tears to keep your eyes refreshed and help get rid of dust and particles that can irritate eyes.
  • Don’t rub your eyes. You might transfer dust and ash from your hands or face to your eyes and that could scratch or irritate them. It’s also helpful to wash your hands regularly. If you wear contacts, this is no time to skimp on your contact lens hygiene – it’s always important to wash and dry your hands before handling contact lenses so that the surface of your lenses stay free of eye irritants.
  • Keep windows and doors closed to keep the air indoors clean. Running your air conditioner may also help but be sure to keep the fresh air intake closed and the filter clean to prevent bringing in additional smoke. However, if it’s too warm to stay indoors with the windows and doors closed and you do not have air conditioning, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends seeking shelter elsewhere.
  • The CDC also recommends limiting indoor air pollution by refraining from using anything that burns, like fireplaces, gas stoves and candles. Vacuums can also stir up dust already present in your home. Air filters are also recommended for those with respiratory conditions.

If you believe you have an eye infection or injury, get medical attention as soon as possible.

With the swiftness of wildfires, things can often get left behind during an evacuation. If you find yourself in need of replacement eyewear or eye care due to a natural disaster, help is available. Visit vspglobal.com/disasteroutreach for more information.

Information received through VSP Vision Care channels is for informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice, medical recommendations, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your eye doctor, physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.

Is COVID-19 Testing Covered for Business Health Trust Members?

Business Health Trust is proud to offer competitive insurance benefits to small and mid-sized businesses in Washington state. We partner with major carriers so that our members can provide competitive employee benefit programs that support healthy, productive employees.

Since the COVID-19 pandemic first hit, our medical partners at Premera Blue Cross and Kaiser Permanente have continued to adapt to take care of members’ needs and help keep the community safe.

In most situations, COVID-19 testing is covered for members enrolled in medical through Business Health Trust:

Kaiser Permanente: Testing and diagnosis at Kaiser Permanente are available at no cost to members. If you decide to get tested at an outside lab, you’ll need to pay for your test, but you can file a claim form for reimbursement. Please note that Kaiser Permanente will cover the cost of testing only if it was conducted by a licensed provider.

Read more about COVID-19 testing for Business Health Trust members enrolled in Kaiser Permanente.

Premera Blue Cross: Testing is covered when a doctor orders the test. The test is covered with no out-of-pocket cost with a doctor’s order. However, keep in mind that most plans don’t cover COVID-19 testing for:

  • Return to work or school
  • Caretaker work requirements
  • Contact tracing
  • Travel requirements
  • Community management
  • Government requested

Read more about COVID-19 testing for Business Health Trust members enrolled in Premera Blue Cross.

Ready for Back-to-Home-Schooling Season? Resources Abound in Our August ‘Healthy Living’ E-News

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to change our lives at home and at work — which for many are now at the same place — Business Health Trust also is adapting to better serve its members. More than your source for comprehensive employee benefits, Business Health Trust also is dedicated to helping employers across the state continue to thrive during and beyond the pandemic, offering resources in our monthly Healthy Living with Business Health Trust e‑newsletter.

Check out the August edition of Healthy Living for resources including our COVID-19 Supply Resources for Employers website and valuable tips from our wellness partners, including access to a parenting webinar series from Wellspring EAP and the 9 top-rated nutrition and diet apps from Kaiser Permanente.

Gloved hands in the shape of a heart with face masks.

Welcome Wellness Kit Now Available to New Business Health Trust Members

Enrolling in Business Health Trust already gives you access to comprehensive, affordable health insurance paired with cost savings and other benefits to help you attract talent and keep your employees healthy and productive. But with many small business currently struggling to find the safety supplies needed to reopen or stay open, Business Health Trust is expanding its offerings for new members.

As the economy in Washington state continues to open up, Business Health Trust is offering a Welcome Wellness Kit to new enrolling groups that includes:

  • 1 hand sanitizer station
  • 1 sanitizer dispenser
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Cloth and/or disposable masks

Current Business Health Trust groups that renew for 2021 also have access to a wellness kit with masks, sanitizer or other items.

Additional personal protection equipment (PPE) and other safety resources also are available through Business Health Trust via its COVID-19 Supply Resources for Employers site.

With a core value to be a resource to employers, Business Health Trust continues to be focused on ways to help small businesses thrive in our changing economy.

If your business is located in King County, you also may be eligible for the Safe Start Supply Kits available through a partnership with King County and other regional chambers and business organizations. Read more about Business Health Trust’s role in their distribution in the article “Safe Start Kits From Business Health Trust are in the News.”