The devastation caused by Hurricane Harvey has had a profound impact on people’s access to health care services in their community. Our priority is making sure people have immediate and easy access to the care they need.

During critical times, agents are often the main point of contact for members. As a reminder, these are things you can do on behalf of a member:

  • Act on their behalf by contacting Customer Services
  • Remind members of existing benefits and services such as:
  • Prescription drugs by mail program
  • Emergency room services are covered regardless of network

UnitedHealthcare has taken the following actions as part of its commitment to helping members, customers and care providers in the counties impacted by Hurricane Harvey. The following measures apply to individuals insured through UnitedHealthcare and are effective through October 31, and will be reviewed again at that time if necessary.

  • Access to Care: Members who may have been displaced from their homes or whose network or medical facility is inaccessible can access care anywhere, as needed and it will be covered at their in-network benefit level.

UnitedHealthcare is also waiving all preauthorization for existing medical and pharmacy treatment, notification requirements, as well as extending claim filing and premium payment deadlines.

  • Prescription Medications and Medical Equipment: Members who are affected can also fill existing prescriptions early (one time, 90-day refill) and replace durable medical equipment, if necessary.  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 ID card, or speak directly to a pharmacist about their situation in order to get an early refill, if necessary. This is available until November 30.
  • For Additional Assistance: Members can call the Customer Care number on the back of their medical ID card, if they need additional assistance. If they have misplaced their medical ID card, they can call 800-643-4845, 8 a.m. – 8 p.m. (in the local time zone), seven days a week. DSNP members can call 800-256-6533.

Help For Your Broader Community:

  • Free Help Line:  Optum is offering a free emotional-support help line to affected individuals. 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.  Callers may also receive referrals to community resources.  Along with the toll-free help line, emotional-support resources and information are available online at

Relief Effort: In addition, UnitedHealthcare, Optum and UnitedHealth Group are donating $1 million and pledging a 2:1 match for employee contributions towards Hurricane Harvey relief efforts.


See specimen policy page 25  for out of network procedures.


Blue Shield – Harvey    *   Irma

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