Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina (Blue Cross NC) is integrating its public cost estimator with its public “Find a Doctor or Facility” tool. The general public now will be able to find average cost estimates for procedures under Blue Options and Blue Advantage plans when they select “Find a Doctor or Facility” on BlueCrossNC.com. Members will continue to use the member version of the tool when they log into Blue Connect. This transition will make the tool easier to find. Additionally, updates on network status for providers will be near real-time, making the cost estimates far more accurate.
As a reminder, cost estimates shown on the tool include total cost of care averages based on historical Blue Cross NC claims data. Because this tool is targeted toward the general health care consumer, cost estimates are not broken out by each separate service related to and including a procedure. Instead, the cost estimate includes the total cost of care for a procedure. The estimates typically include physician fees, facility fees and costs for anesthesia, drugs, medical supplies and customer responsibility (deductible, co-pay and co-insurance). These components are consistently applied across each treatment category to ensure “apples to apples” comparisons across physician groups/health systems.