Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts customers and members will receive $101 million in premium refunds and rebates due to lower than anticipated health care costs during the COVID-19 emergency, the big insurer announced Wednesday.
"Since many elective procedures and routine visits have been deferred during the pandemic, our medical costs during the second quarter were lower than we originally anticipated," said Andrew Dreyfus, president and CEO of Blue Cross. "We're giving money back to our customers and members to help provide financial relief during what we know is an incredibly challenging and uncertain time."
The insurer said it had also invested $116 million to support its members, customers, clinical partners, and the community throughout the pandemic, bringing the company's COVID-related financial commitments to more than $217 million.
The refunds will materialize in the form of credits that will be applied in September and reflected on the next invoice for fully insured employer groups and members (including under-65 direct pay and Medex members) and will total 15 percent of their May 2020 medical premium, Blue Cross said. Before the end of the year, Medicare Advantage members will receive a one month "premium holiday" during which they will not be charged their monthly premium.