Federal health agency taps Physicians Health Plan of Mid-Michigan to manage high-risk pool

LANSING, Mich. - Physicians Health Plan of Mid-Michigan (PHP) President and CEO Scott Wilkerson said the not-for-profit health plan is pleased that the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has selected it to provide high-quality health pool coverage at affordable rates to Michigan residents with pre-existing medical conditions. Under the contract announced today, PHP will manage a high-risk pool of chronically uninsured people under the Affordable Care Act, the federal health care reform law passed earlier this year.

"Throughout our 29-year history, PHP has earned a well-deserved reputation for extraordinary member service," Wilkerson said. "PHP is proud to have a reputation that has drawn national attention, including being ranked as one of the nation's best health care plans by U.S. News and World Report. PHP has a long history of partnering with the State of Michigan on health issues, and this new role allows us to build on our 29-year tradition of providing accessible care with high quality."

This new role - the result of a deal struck this week with the state Office of Financial and Insurance Regulation (OFIR) - dovetails with PHP's excellent and well-established track record of serving public-sector programs and the state of Michigan.

OFIR will have regulatory oversight over the state-implemented pool, which will be funded entirely by subscriber premiums and an estimated $141 million in federal subsidies. The temporary pool will operate until Jan. 1, 2014, when federal law requires all insurers to accept individuals regardless of pre-existing conditions.

Legal residents with pre-existing conditions who have been uninsured for the previous six months will be eligible to enroll.Enrollment is scheduled to begin Aug. 31, and coverage is slated to start Oct. 1.

Michigan consumers interested in detailed enrollment, benefit and eligibility information can contact PHP toll-free by calling 1.877.459.3113 between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. weekdays or go to PHP's website at phpmm.org.

"We are confident that our new members will find what existing PHP members have long known - that our approach ensures they receive high-quality clinical care and service from our extensive network of providers and hospitals," Wilkerson said.