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Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Insurance Challenges and Ways to Succeed Beth Rader Sean Corry.

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Presentation on theme: "Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Insurance Challenges and Ways to Succeed Beth Rader Sean Corry."— Presentation transcript:

1 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Insurance Challenges and Ways to Succeed Beth Rader Sean Corry

2 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Introductions Raenette Franco, CBCS Certified Biller Coder Specialist/Reimbursement Consultant o New Jersey Beth Rader, Independent Consultant o San Francisco Sean Corry, Insurance Broker, PKU Dad o Seattle

3 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Here’s What We’ll Talk About Today we’ll talk about insurance coverage: o Different types of coverage o Tips, skills, and strategies to address challenges o Where you might find some help

4 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org 1. Covered Benefit? 2. Medically Necessary? 3. Processed Correctly? Paid! When Coverage Works… But when coverage doesn’t work, the answer lies in one of these areas

5 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org 1. Covered Benefit? 2. Medically Necessary? 3. Processed Correctly? Paid! Do You Have Coverage For Medical Foods? Key Questions: What kind of insurance do you have? Does your insurance policy cover Enteral Formula/Medical foods? Or provide HCPCS Codes to identify the service such as B4155, B4157, B4162, S9435. Are there any exclusions for Enteral Formula/Medical Foods? How does the insurance policy cover medical foods?

6 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Obtaining the Proper Coverage Information Most insurance companies require a prior authorization before coverage benefits. Even if your insurance company does not require a prior authorization ask for a pre- determination to ensure your Enteral Formula/Medical food is covered in writing. Ask if you have Pharmacy Benefits just in case you may have both benefits. If you have both, go for the most affordable route.

7 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Not Covered? Ask for exception If you are not covered due to exclusions, ask your employer for a medical exception removal for Enteral Formula/Medical Foods due to your disorder. Provide your employer a Letter of Medical Necessity from your Physician that describes the importance for your Enteral Formula/Medical Foods. Some ERISA Plans may make an exception. Ask to speak to the Medical Review Department.

8 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Just Like a Snowflake… No Two Issues are the Same Laws differ from state to state Coverage differs from state to state Sometimes only Federal laws applies The insurance companies handle PKU coverage in different ways Insurance coverage can be complicated! NPKUA provides Reimbursement assistance. Please contact our Reimbursement Coaches Team. Covered Benefit

9 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Types of Coverage Government (i.e. Medicaid, Medicare, Etc.) Private Insurance o Individual or family plans Includes “High Risk Pools” o Group Coverage (Employer-based) Insured Plans, regulated by the states Self-Insured Employers - Also called “self-funded” or “ERISA plans” Covered Benefit

10 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Does Your Insurance Plan Include Medical Food as a Covered Benefit? It depends on your plan, but rule of thumb: Government - except for Medicare, chances are good that medical food is covered Private insurance o Varies widely o Depends on state and the specific insurance We’ll explain how to find whether your plan must cover medical foods Covered Benefit

11 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Deciding About Coverage: Sometimes You Have Choices When can you evaluate your options? o When individual coverage is available to you o When you get a new job with benefits o During “Open Enrollment” at work More options should be available in 2014 when federal Health Reform really kicks in! Covered Benefit

12 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Evaluating Insurance Options Does the plan have the coverage you need? o Medical services, like clinic visits and blood draws o Formula only? o Low-protein foods? Ask about PKU coverage before you take a job Find out how medical foods covered o As a medical service? o As a pharmacy benefit? o Are only specific brands covered? o Any exclusions? Covered Benefit

13 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Evaluating Potential Coverage Find out what your cost-sharing will be o Deductibles – must pay out-of-pocket before coverage. o Benefit maximum Caps or Limits (you pay out-of- pocket after cap/limit is reached). o $ Copayments or % Coinsurance Caution with individual health plans o Rx may be an optional benefit o Rx may have coverage limitations (Remember, Kuvan is a prescription drug) Covered Benefit

14 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Where Can We Read About PKU Coverage? The “Summary of Benefits” o Only a few pages long o Offers only the plan highlights o Will probably NOT tell you what you need to know “This is only a brief summary of the major benefits provided by our plans. For information and details, please refer to the Benefit Booklet or the Insurance Contract.” Covered Benefit

15 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Digging Deeper for Coverage Information The Benefits Booklet o Sometimes called an “Insurance Certificate” or “Evidence of Coverage” o ALWAYS keep the benefits booklet for coverage details in writing. o Usually not given to you for many weeks AFTER coverage begins o Many pages long o Should give at least a brief description of coverage for PKU formula and/or medical foods Covered Benefit

16 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Benefit Booklet Example Covered Benefit Page 21 of a “Benefits Booklet”

17 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Might There Be Even MORE Detail? The Insurance Contract o This is for insured plans, either individual or group The “Plan Document” o This is for self-insured (ERISA) plans These are usually big documents, and spell out almost all the details of coverage. Sign-up/Enroll on your insured plan online. Can you get a copy? From where? Covered Benefit

18 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Claims With Employers That Manage Their Own Medical Plan* The “Plan Document” determines coverage Many plan trustees have never heard of PKU or dealt with a claim for medical foods o “Trustees” are the ones running the plan If they do not cover PKU medical foods, you might be able to change their minds! * Self-Insured Employers? See appendix slides for more details Covered Benefit

19 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Convincing Employers* Ask them to reconsider: Ask your employer for a medical exception removal for Enteral Formula/Medical Foods due to your disorder. o Tell them PKU is very rare. If they provide coverage, their costs will be limited because they probably don’t have other PKUers o Being off diet leads to severe, progressive mental retardation, depression, impulse control disorder, phobias, epilepsy, tremors, and other disorders o Diet is the only sure treatment! Covered Benefit * Self-Insured Employers? See appendix slides for more details

20 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org More Reasons for Employers* Also tell them: o A treated person with PKU lives a normal, productive life o It is less costly to cover medical foods than to cover the illnesses that come from being off diet o It is the right thing to do! Covered Benefit * Self-Insured Employers? See appendix slides for more details

21 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Could We Get National Coverage? NPKUA is working on this! Some of you may have participated in the Regional HHS meetings last summer Your support and effort may play a key role Covered Benefit

22 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org NPKUA Efforts For National Coverage Legislation: Medical Foods Equity Act Conversations at Regional HHS meetings o Washington, Atlanta, Chicago, Denver Working with lobbying firm to meet with National HHS Advocacy table at NPKUA Conference o What does access to medical food mean to you? Covered Benefit

23 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Is Your Prescription Medically Necessary? 1. Covered Benefit? 2. Medically Necessary? 3. Processed Correctly? Paid! Medical Necessity Key Questions: Do you have a Letter of Medical Necessity (LOMN)? Do you have a Prescription? Do you have clinical notes? What are your plan’s rules for assuring coverage?

24 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org What documents are needed for Medical Necessity? And Why? Letter of Medical Necessity (LOMN) is the most important piece of document needed to determine medical necessity. It is provided from your physician. Prescription is the basis for the service and coverage. Clinical notes show that you are following through with your dietary management and nutritional therapy.

25 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Why Wouldn’t Medical Food Be “Medically Necessary?” The plan may have specific criteria that hasn’t been met Diagnosis issues Age and gender restrictions Particular items not on the plan’s formulary We will discuss how to appeal Medical Necessity

26 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Coverage Process 1. Covered Benefit? 2. Medically Necessary? 3. Processed Correctly? Paid! Process Issues

27 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Claims Processing Issues Issues with claims processing could include: Incomplete claim form Coding error Missing documentation attached to claim Medical food is mis-categorized (food supplement, diet aid) Other misunderstandings What can you do? Process Issues

28 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Be Prepared It is common for a claim to go wrong Know your coverage, and get everyone on board – Talk with: o The insurance company o Your clinic professionals o Your pharmacist, etc. o The company (or companies) providing the medical foods Tools to Use

29 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Keep Copies of Everything Get a written prescription for formula/food o Keep a copy for yourself, in case the original gets lost o May need to get your Rx “renewed” occasionally Copy the label of your medical food product Copy your invoice o This can help solve billing and coding issues Tools to Use

30 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Claims Denials Even if you have coverage, a claim may be denied due to medical necessity or processing issues! Remember, PKU claims are not common May be an annoying administrative error Carefully read your Explanation of Benefits (EOB) for any descriptive errors. Claims Denials

31 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Claims Denials Claims mistakes can be corrected! o Simply denied in error o Coding problems o Mistaken for “Food Supplement” o Missing authorization numbers or provider National provider numbers (NPI). Claims Denials

32 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org How to Interact With Your Insurance Company Be able to explain PKU & dietary treatment Be able to explain what “medical food” is o Not a “food supplement!” o It is “prescribed” by your doctor or clinic o Provide a Letter of Medical Necessity that explains medical foods and the importance (provided by your physician). o It’s covered by the plan! (Show them where) o Provide your “Evidence of Coverage” from your insurance summary booklet. If transferred to another person, be prepared to start again start at the beginning. ALWAYS obtain a name & reference number. Claims Denials

33 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Claims Denials: First Steps Read your policy (again) o What’s covered, what’s not o How to file an appeal Call “member services” o Ask them to walk you through your coverage o Ask for an explanation of the denial o Determine if a “phone appeal” can be started o Ask if your physician can contact the medical review director. Claims Denials

34 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Claims Denials: First Steps Does your insurer need more information? o Ask what information you should collect o Ask what information your providers should submit: Health history? Letter of Medical Necessity A treatment plan? Other details? Claims Denials

35 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Put It In Writing A clear statement why the denial should be reversed Be thorough - cover all the bases Make it factual, not emotional o State law apply? o Error regarding medical necessity? o Cannot tolerate “that” formula; need to switch to another Claims Denials

36 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Organization and Details Count Make copies Ask for written confirmation of phone calls Keep a notebook names, dates of calls, etc. Keep a Letter of Medical Necessity (golden key to coverage) Verify their promises to follow-up o If they don’t call you when promised, call them! Claims Denials

37 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Possible Second Appeals 41states plus the District of Columbia have set up independent review boards to handle appeals It is not uncommon for state appeals to overturn insurance company denials Same rules for you – keep good records, be persistent Claims Denials

38 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org You Are Not Alone Your clinic The human resources department Your health insurance broker State Insurance Commissioner The medical food or pharmaceutical company NPKUA o Tools on the website o New Insurance Coach Claims Denials

39 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org The New NPKUA Insurance Coaches Goal: Insurance Coaches in Every State or Region Timing: Starting Fall 2013, as Coaches are on board and go through orientation What you can expect if you sign up: o Orientation and training o Resources to help (sample letters, information about the law) Call NPKUA to see if there is a Coach in your state Resources

40 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Resources For Patients OrganizationCategoryReimbursement Contact NPKUAPatient Advocacy for PKUwww.npkua.org Call: 1-715-437-0477 Patient Advocacy FoundationPatient Advocacy Generalwww.patientadvocate.org Call:1-800-532-5274 Compassion*Works – MFRS Patient Advocacy – Medical Food Reimbursement Specialists & Consultant Call: 973.402.3984 Email: raenette01@gmail.com AbbottMedical Food Productshttp://www.abbottpatientassistancefoundation.org/medical_n utritionals.asp Applied NutritionMedical Food ProductsCall: 1-800-605-0410 Email: Coverage@medicalfood.comCoverage@medicalfood.com Website: www.medicalfood.com/coverage.phpwww.medicalfood.com/coverage.php Cambrooke FoodsMedical Food ProductsCall 1-866-4-LOW-PRO Mead Johnson NutritionMedical Food Products Nutricia now partners with Applied Nutrition Medical Food ProductsCall: 1-800-356-7354, ext. 1200 VitafloMedical Food ProductsCall: 1-888-VITAFLO BioMarinPharmaceuticalhttp://www.kuvan.com/patients/parent-caregivers-patient- support-a-assistance-programs.html Call: 1-877-MY-KUVAN Resources

41 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Financial Assistance Programs OrganizationCategoryContact Mead JohnsonHelping Hands Program for Special Kids (Mead Johnson provides infant nutrition to babies with special needs. mjmedicalaffairs@mjn.com (812) 429-6399, Monday through Friday, 7:30 AM to 4:00 PM, CST/CDT. Newborn Screening Programs in the U.S.U.S. wide programs that will provide or assist with metabolic foods/formula (per state). Call and ask for metabolic formula/foods assistance in your state. Or click on the hyperlink to your right. http://genes-r-us.uthscsa.edu/sites/genes-r- us/files/state_contacts.pdf. http://genes-r-us.uthscsa.edu/sites/genes-r- us/files/state_contacts.pdf National Newborn Screening and Global Resource Center. 3907 Galacia Drive, Austin, TX 78759 ( 512) 345-5685.. Medicaid – Medical Needy ProgramsFor people who are not eligible for Medicaid. Contact your local department of Human Services, for assistance with Medically Needy programs (spend-down). http://www.medicaid.gov/. http://www.medicaid.gov/ ( Click on State Profiles, then the website above) Apria/Coram Healthcare – Self-Pay Pricing. Financial Hardship Program have but can’t afford co-insurance. Self-Pay Pricing for uninsured & Financial Hardship Program for insured people that can’t afford their co-pay/co-ins. East Coast 888 334-7978 (option #1 New Referral) West Coast 888-942-7742 (option #1 New Referral) FOR ANY QUESTIONS, PLEASE CONTACT OUR NPKUA, INSURANCE ADVOCATES/COACHES.

42 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Covered Benefit? Yes Medically Necessary? Yes Processed Correctly? Yes No - Deny Coverage Process Roadmap We want to help you get there!

43 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org We’ll Stop Here, But More in the Appendix The slides in the appendix provide a high level look at: o Types of coverage Government, Group, Individual Insured and Self-funded o State Mandated Benefits o Self-Insured Employers

44 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Questions? Time For More Discussion

45 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Appendix Why is insurance coverage so complicated?

46 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Types of Coverage Government o Medicaid and Medicare o Title V: Children with Special Individual or family plans o Includes “High Risk Pools” Group Coverage (Employer-based) o Insured Plans, regulated by the states o Self-Insured Employers Also called “self-funded” or “ERISA plans”

47 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Government Insurance - Types Low Income Help: Medicaid, WIC, Title 5 o Health coverage for lower-income individuals and families o Coverage varies by state, can be very complicated o Medical Needy Programs through Medicaid Medicare o Health coverage for people 65 or older, people under 65 with certain conditions or disabilities Federal/Military employees and retirees

48 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Government PKU Coverage Medicare o Medical Food generally not covered except in rare circumstances Medicaid – rules vary state by state Plans for federal employees o Regulated by Congressional law or administrative policies It is very complicated and mysterious!

49 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Private Insurance: Individual (or Family) Coverage Buy directly from an insurance company o Coverage for PKU may be required More limited benefits o Compared to group coverage Currently, most people have to pass a health screen to get individual coverage An alternative: A state “high risk pool” o Guaranteed coverage but may be expensive!

50 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Employer-Based or Group Coverage Many people have health insurance coverage through their employer’s plan Health Savings Account plan (HSA ) High deductible plan. Generally, two types of employer plans: o An INSURED plan, subject to state “insurance mandates” o A SELF-FUNDED plan, not subject to state “insurance mandates” Also called “Self-insured” or “ERISA plans”

51 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org What’s an Insurance Mandate? It is a law that requires insurance coverage for treatment of a specific health condition Most benefit mandates come from state law o PKU medical food is an example in many states Some mandates come from federal law o E.g., equal coverage for mental health o There is no federal mandate for PKU coverage

52 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org State Insurance Mandates The apply only to “insured plans,” when an employer buys coverage from an insurance company To be insured plan: o For a specific monthly premium, o The insurance company promises to cover all the medical claims, whatever they may be. o This means that the insurance company is assuming this claims risk. This is regulated by state laws Sometimes mandates apply to individual coverage, group coverage, or both

53 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Why Were PKU Mandates Needed? PKU is rare and not well understood Formula (and now medical foods) are the only treatment They are not “prescription drugs” o As a category, prescription drugs are almost always covered (This is why Kuvan coverage is generally available)

54 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org State Insurance Mandates for PKU Blue: Formula and low-pro foods Pink: Low-pro foods only!            Yellow: Formula only  : No Mandate

55 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Self-Insurance is Different Some employers “self-insure.” They don’t buy “insurance” from an insurance company o Design their own medical plan o Assume the claims risk themselves o They “self-insure” They are subject only to federal law They are NOT subject to state mandates

56 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Self-Insured Employers The employer decides what will be covered, and what will not Some self-insured plans cover PKU medical foods Many do not cover PKU medical foods o Sometime on purpose o Sometimes they’ve never heard of PKU

57 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org Which Employers Self-Insure? Generally, it is the larger employers: o 82.1% of employers with 500 + employees o 25.7% of employers with 100 to 499 employees o 13% of employers with fewer than 100 employees also self-insure Nearly 60% of all U.S. employees are covered by self- insured plans! Remember – not subject to state mandates. However, there may be a chance with health insures discretion. Contact member services **

58 Improving the lives of individuals with PKU and pursuing a cure www.npkua.org NPKUA Coverage Resource Center For one on one coverage support and more coverage information, please feel free to contact our Reimbursement Coaches. Call NPKUA to see if there is a Coach in your state We want to help you get there!


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