UnitedHealth Group (NYSE: UNH) and its benefits and services businesses, UnitedHealthcare and Optum, are taking action to help people in Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama prepare for any potential disruption that may be caused by Tropical Storm Isaac. This is in addition to similar actions taken this weekend to support Floridians, who may have been affected by the storm.
Actions include assisting UnitedHealthcare plan participants with access to care and prescription medications; opening a free emotional-support line; and supporting the American Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund, which is helping people in affected communities.
Access to Care:
- Plan participants who are displaced from their homes or whose network medical facility or physician is not accessible are encouraged to call customer care at the number located on the back of their medical ID card for assistance. Customer care professionals will help affected people obtain in-network benefits if a network care provider is not available. Plan participants who do not have their medical ID cards can call 866-633-2446, 8 a.m.-8 p.m. (in the local time zone), Monday through Friday.This includes plan participants enrolled in all fully insured commercial products, Medicare Advantage, Medicare Supplement plans and Medicaid plans. This policy is effective from Aug. 27 to Sept. 10, 2012.
- Early Prescription Refills: People who are displaced or do not have access to their medications will be able to have prescriptions refilled early. Members are asked to alert the pharmacist that they were affected by the tropical storm in order to ensure the early prescription refill request is processed appropriately.This includes plan participants enrolled in all fully insured commercial products, Medicaid, Medicare Advantage, Medicare Supplement or Medicare Part D offerings insured through UnitedHealthcare. For mail-order delivery service to affected areas or any other questions related to their prescriptions, people are encouraged to call the pharmacy number on the back of their medical or prescription ID card, or speak directly to a pharmacist about their situation in order to get an early refill, if necessary. This policy is effective from Aug. 27 to Sept. 10, 2012.UnitedHealthcare encourages members who are dependent on home-based medical equipment, such as dialysis machines or ventilators, to review their individual emergency plan and be prepared to make alternative arrangements in the event those services are disrupted.
- Free Help Line: Optum, a leading health services company, is offering a free emotional-support help line.The toll-free number, 866-342-6892, will be open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, for as long as necessary. The service is free of charge and open to anyone. Specially trained OptumHealth mental health specialists help people manage their stress and anxiety so they can continue to address their everyday needs. Callers may also receive referrals to community resources to help them with specific concerns, including financial and legal matters.Along with the toll-free help line, emotional support resources and information are available online at www.liveandworkwell.com.
- Support for the American Red Cross: Through a $500,000 annual commitment, UnitedHealth Group participates in the Annual Disaster Giving Program of the American Red Cross, which is prepared to offer shelter, food, emotional support and other assistance to people who may be affected by the storm.
About the American Red CrossThe American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; provides nearly half of the nation's blood; teaches lifesaving skills; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a charitable organization – not a government agency – and depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit www.redcross.org or join our blog at http://blog.redcross.org.About UnitedHealth GroupUnitedHealth Group (NYSE: UNH) is a diversified health and well-being company dedicated to helping people live healthier lives and making health care work better. With headquarters in Minnetonka, Minn., UnitedHealth Group offers a broad spectrum of products and services through two business platforms: UnitedHealthcare, which provides health care coverage and benefits services; and Optum, which provides information and technology-enabled health services. Through its businesses, UnitedHealth Group serves more than 75 million people worldwide. For more information, visit UnitedHealth Group at www.unitedhealthgroup.com.
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