Empire BlueCross BlueShield Health and Wellness Programs
As part of the Fund’s commitment to help you reach your wellness goals, the Fund offers several health and wellness benefits through Empire BlueCross BlueShield.
Mobile Health App
Keep track of your benefits on the go with Empire’s Mobile Health app. The app allows you to:
- Find a doctor, urgent care center, hospital and other providers
- Store a copy of your ID and share it via fax and email
- Find information about your benefits and coverage details.
24/7 NurseLine: Get Answers to Your Health Questions
Registered nurses are available day and night through Empire’s 24/7 NurseLine program to answer your health questions and offer advice on your treatment and symptoms for things like minor cuts or burns, a sick child, headaches, fever, asthma, back pain and other chronic conditions.
The 24/7 NurseLine can provide information on:
- What your symptoms might mean
- What type of medical care is appropriate for your symptoms
- Home treatment options
- Medications, drug interactions and side effects
- Doctors and other providers that can treat your condition.
The 24/7 NurseLine is FREE for all members enrolled in Local 94 medical benefits. Call the 24/7 NurseLine at 800-337-4770.
For medical emergencies, call 911. This program is not a substitute for a doctor’s care. Be sure to speak with your doctor about any health questions or concerns.
Behavioral Health Programs
Coping with mental health and medical conditions can be confusing and frustrating. Fortunately, you don’t have to face these challenges alone. The BCBS Behavioral Health program offers 24/7 confidential counseling and guidance on treatment for issues like anxiety, depression and substance abuse. Counselors can also help you find providers and hospitals, provide information on substance abuse benefits and provide referrals to providers who specialize in substance abuse, or caring for children or seniors with special needs.
The Behavioral Health program is available FREE of charge to all local 94 members and their covered family members. To speak with a counselor call Member Services at the number on your ID card.
If you are scheduled for an outpatient procedure, have been admitted to a hospital or you have been diagnosed with a serious health condition, the Empire case management program can help coordinate your care and post-discharge needs. Nurse case managers work with your provider, pharmacists, dieticians and other health professionals to manager:
- Follow-up care
- Medical records
- Purchase and delivery of durable medical equipment.
Take the Call—You’ll be Glad You Did
There’s no need to do anything; nurse case managers will call you. A nurse will go over your doctor’s instructions about follow-up care and medications and even give personal lifestyle coaching. Case management benefits are offered to all active Local 94 participants and their covered dependents. Retired Local 94 members are not eligible for this benefit. For more information about the Empire case management program, visit empireblue.com.
A cancer diagnosis can be daunting and overwhelming, but that doesn’t mean you have to navigate treatment alone. Through Empire, the Fund offers cancer resources at every stage—from screenings to transitioning back into work.
Early detection of cancer can make all the difference in your condition, that’s why the Fund covers cancer many different cancer screenings, often with no copay or out-of-pocket cost to you. This includes things like:
- Prostate screenings
- Annual exams.
The Fund understands that in addition to screenings and medical procedures, cancer treatment is about improving total well-being. Wellness tools are available to help you stay healthy or choose new healthy habits. Empire can help with things like quitting smoking, maintaining a healthy weight, fitness tips, mental health and screening reminders.
You also have access to Empire nurse care managers and 24/7 NurseLine nurses who can offer guidance at any time.
For more information on cancer resources available, visit empireblue.com.
If you have a complex health condition, one that requires expensive treatment, or one that is considered high risk by Empire, Empire will call you to help navigate the health care system. You, your family and your doctors will be partnered with a designated nurse care manager and other experts to help you manage your condition and treatment. Nurse care managers will also help you create a care plan to help you reach your health goals and avoid hospital readmissions.
With Empire’s ComplexCare Program, you’ll have access to nurse care managers who will:
- Give you personal attention and lifestyle coaching
- Help you make better decisions about your options
- Guide you to transition your care
- Coordinate care between doctors and other health care providers.
A nurse care manager will reach out if you have a condition that requires extra assistance. If you would like to speak to a nurse care manager sooner, call the customer service number on your ID card, (800) 553-9603 or visit empireblue.com.
The ComplexCare Program is available to all active Local 94 members and their dependents. Retired Local 94 members are not eligible for this benefit.
If you’re expecting, the Empire Future Moms program can help you take care of your baby from the first trimester through delivery. The Future Moms Program is a voluntary program available to all Local 94 participants and their dependents. Sign up for Future Moms and you’ll get:
- 24/7 access to a nurse coach who can answer questions about your pregnancy, newborn care and more.
- A maternity care diary with tips for a healthy pregnancy.
- A copy of Mayo Clinic Guide to a Health Pregnancy.
- Access to dietitians, social workers and lactation consultants, as needed.
For more information and to sign up for Future Moms, call (800) 828-5891 or visit empireblue.com.
Estimate Your Cost
Choosing the right provider can make a world of difference in the cost of your care. Different hospitals and facilities, even in-network ones, can charge different amounts for the same services.
Before you go for care, try estimating the cost of your visit on empireblue.com. There you can find out how much a procedure might cost and how much insurance might pay and choose the facility that fits your budget.
Find a Doctor
Seeing a network provider can help save you and the plan money on your medical costs. Use the BCBS online Find a Doctor tool to locate network doctors, hospitals, labs and other providers.
To start your search, log in to your Empire account or search as a guest and enter your plan information. You can then search by type of provider, provider name, specialization, location and more.
If you need non-emergency medical care right away, try visiting an urgent care center instead of the emergency room. Urgent care centers can treat a variety of medical problems that need immediate attention—at a fraction of the cost of an emergency room visit. Urgent care providers are equipped to treat:
- Sprains, strains
- Nausea, diarrhea
- Ear or sinus pain
- Allergic Reactions
- Animal bites
- Back pain
- Cough, sore throat
- Burning with urination
- Rashes, minor burns
- Eye pain or irritation.
To find an urgent care provider, use the Empire Find a Doctor tool.
If you are experiencing a true life-threatening emergency, call 911 or visit the nearest emergency room. If you’re still not sure where to go for care, let a nurse help you—call the 24/7 NurseLine at (800) 337-4770.
Having an accurate health record can be critical to ensuring you get safe, effective treatment. Use the Empire online health record tool to keep track of:
- Your health conditions
- Your dates of shots(immunizations)
- Tests and screenings
- Prescription and over-the-counter drugs you take.
Once you’ve completed your health record, you can print and share it with your doctors to help avoid harmful drug interactions, repeat tests or unnecessary extra procedures.
To access the tool, log in to Member Online Services and click on MyHealth then select MyHealthRecord.
The Weight Center
The Empire Weight Center offers a collection of online resources with information on how to better manage your diet and weight. The Weight Center also includes links to tools like a BMI calculator, Pandora workout station and discounts on fitness products and services.
To access The Weight Center, visit www.empireblue.com/theweightcenter and either register or log in to you Empire account.
Online Wellness Toolkit
The Empire Online Wellness Toolkit can provide personalized recommendations to improve your healthy habits. To start, take the Health Assessment by logging on to empireblue.com. Your results will be used to highlight areas of the interactive toolkit that can help you work towards a healthier lifestyle.
Visit the online toolkit to:
- Create a personalized plan based on your lifestyle, interests and schedule.
- Use trackers to stay on top of your blood pressure, diet, exercise, tobacco use and even your mood.
- Access health information, videos and interactive quizzes.
In addition to health and wellness benefits listed above, special discounts and promotions are available for Local 94 members through Empire. Log on to empirebluecross.com to find discounts on products and services like DNA kits, fitness memberships, home baby-proofing, infertility treatment and more.
Need to Find a Doctor, Dentist or Vision Specialist?
What is the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA)?
Generally, the Family and Medical Leave Act (“FMLA”) allows you to take up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave during any 12-month period due to:
- the birth, adoption, or placement with you for adoption of a child;
- to provide care for a spouse, child, or parent who is seriously ill; or
- your own serious illness.
You are generally eligible for a leave under the FMLA if you:
- have worked for the same Contributing Employer for at least 12 months;
- have worked at least 1,250 hours over the previous 12 months; and
- work at a location where at least 50 employees are employed by the Contributing Employer within 75 miles.