• VHS Pharmacy Discount Program

    Prescription prices have skyrocketed and many people can’t afford to get the medicine they require. You can combat rising prescriptions costs by using a discount pharmacy card. Prescriptions savings at over 60,000 participating pharmacies nationwide including Walgreens, CVS, and more. 70% of Americans take at least ONE prescription and 20% take 5 or more! How much are you and your family spending on prescription costs.

    The card is easy to use with members receiving an average of 42% savings on prescriptions by simply presenting the card at your pharmacy of choice with your prescription where the pharmacist will calculate the savings. If you have insurance with pharmacy benefits, present both cards to receive the lowest price. Immediate family is included.

    This membership is a discount card offering reduced prices and you are responsible to pay the pharmacy 100% of the discounted price. Each pharmacy determines their own retail pricing and will offer some prescriptions at or below cost to draw customers to their store. If you present your discount card only to find the “discount” price is higher than the pharmacy’s retail rate or sale price, you will always pay the lowest price available.

    No paperwork, no hassle…..instant savings.

    Call me today at 623.256.7270 to have a conversation regarding how we help keep money in your pocket by using discount products and services that give you access to healthcare without HUGE price tags attached.

    Pharmacy discounts are NOT insurance and NOT intended as a substitute for Insurance.

  • What is a Health Advocate?

    A health advocate is a family member, friend, trusted coworker or hired professional who can ask questions, write down information and speak up for you to facilitate better understand with regard to your health issues and insurance in order for you to get the care and resources you need. Quality health care requires taking an active role in decisions and having someone who is another set of ears and eyes can provide a big advantage.

    Health Advocate Solutions through VHS’s partnership with Benefitspal helps you navigate through insurance and healthcare systems more fluidly.  Having someone who knows the ins and outs can help alleviate some of the fear and frustration felt when confronted with a major illness or accident and confusion experienced when dealing with insurance and healthcare providers.     

    Simply call toll free number anytime you have a concern.  You will be given your personal health advocate who will provide unlimited, confidential support.  

    • Help find the right doctors and hospitals
    • Make appointments
    • Untangling medical bills and insurance claims
    • Clarifying benefits and answer questions about tests, treatments and medication options
    • Coordinate care among providers
    • Assist with eldercare and related healthcare issues
    • Arrange second opinions and medical records transfers
    • Negotiate discounts on medical and dental bills on your behalf when possible
    • Negotiate payment arrangements with providers for non-covered services

    Your health advocate will work tirelessly to make sure you and your family are taken care of in the most professional way possible.  They help resolve complex issues by interacting with the health and insurance professionals on your behalf.  Your privacy is protected and nothing will be disclosed to your employer, insurance or medical personnel or your family without your permission.  

    Health Advocate does not replace health insurance, provide medical care or recommend treatment.  

    Schedule your FREE No Obligation Consultation to learn how BenefitsPal through VHS can save you time, money while increasing the healthcare experience!

  • Mandate or Not To Mandate…

    One of the many issues revolving around the ACA is the mandate that you either have insurance or pay a fine. The logic was that by forcing everyone to have coverage, although considered by many to be coercive and unfair, it would level the playing field in terms of the number of healthy people versus sick people in the market.

    The mandate or fine for Americans who do not purchase health insurance is $695 or 2.5 percent of income, whichever amount is larger. The fine was intended to keep insurance prices lower because more healthy people would buy in thus paying more in premiums than the insurance company pays out for their care which in terms helps subsidize the cost of treating sicker people. It was meant to be high enough to make consumers think about skipping coverage yet not as expensive as actually purchasing insurance.

    Supporters of the mandate argue eliminating the fine will likely result in a significant increase in premiums, which would in turn substantially increase the number of uninsured Americans. It is also believed that this move could drive some insurers out of the market place completely making the options available to consumers even more limited.

    On the other side of the argument, The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) and the Joint Committee on Taxation (JCT) estimate that repealing the mandate could lower the deficit by $388 billion over a decade, while the number of people with health insurance would decrease by 13 million by 2027, the nongroup insurance markets would remain stable and average premiums would increase by only about 10%

    So what is the answer? Yet to be determined by the CBO, JCT, the President, insurance companies, medical providers and pharmaceutical companies.

    In the meantime, individuals need to take control of their health and the way they manage their healthcare. Become proactive rather than reactive. Find ways to stay healthy NOW instead of fighting to get healthy after diagnosed with an illness or disease. Have easy, affordable access to physicians when they need them rather than having to wait days for an appointment or end up in an urgent care or emergency room after hours for the cold or flu. Virtual Healthcare Solutions provides a series of packages that address those times so you can connect with a physician when you need to from wherever you are. For more information, contact Susan Lehmkuhl @ 623.256.7270

    Sign up now to receive our weekly newsletter Lifestyle Strategies for Wellful Living in Health, Wealth and Play at www.vhsarizona.com

  • How's YOUR healthcare business doing?

    High healthcare cost, VHS advantage
    Like it or not, if you provide benefits to your employees you are in the healthcare business considering that after payroll, health care is usually the second largest expense.  Do you apply the same level of care to your health-care spending as you do to other expenditures?  If you are like most companies, the answer is NO.
    It is time you became a good steward of your healthcare business for the success of your business as well as the well being of your employees.  But how?  Now more than ever it’s time to take an active role in your healthcare decisions and even more so if you are an employer.  Most people, business owners as well as individuals, don’t apply the same level of care to their health-care spending that they do to other major expenditures which results in waste, fraud and abuse.
    There are a number of things you can do to run the healthcare business within your company.  First make sure you have someone handling benefits who is number savvy and good with people.  Regardless of the size of your company, this responsibility is a big one to be taken seriously by whomever you put in that position.
    Second, choosing your care providers and programs is an important factor in today’s healthcare arena.  Here are some things you should consider:
         1.  Transparency
         2.  Pricing and bundling
         3.  Implementation
         4.  Support
    Individuals and employers tend to pick the least expense option available without really understanding the scope of the program.  There is little effort given to help people understand how to use the services which results in dissatisfaction, increased cost and potentially the termination of the benefits when renewal is available.
    While it is widely agreed that the healthcare system needs to be overhauled, there are programs and services that can be implemented which not only add value, also increases employee satisfaction, improves overall health and heightens the employee experience which ultimately makes it a more productive work environment.
    Virtual Healthcare Solutions’ BenefitsPal is one such program that when implemented correctly can significantly save members money.  In one case study, the resulting savings was over $140,000 on prescriptions during the first year alone.  Another individual was able to have an Emergency Department visited negotiated down from a billed invoice of over $5,000 to less than $1,000 by a skilled negotiator.  Countless members avoid costly time away from work, excess spending for urgent care and emergency room visits by using Telemedicine.   The success of these programs is due, in part, to the dedication of VHS and BenefitsPal to provide education for the implementation of programs.  To have the programs without using them is a misappropriation of not only finances, customer service and fiduciary responsibility as well.
    Schedule your FREE No Obligation Consultation to learn how BenefitsPal through VHS can save you time, money while increasing the employee experience!
  • Emergency Departments vs. Urgent Care vs. Telemedicine

    The rising cost of healthcare is forcing consumers to become more involved in their health and wellness. The increase in premiums, co-pays and deductibles has caused many individuals to opt out of insurance completely or, more alarmingly, use Emergency Rooms and Urgent Care Facilities as a substitute for speaking with a physician. IN 2010, a study from the Center for Healthcare Research & Transformation found 35{a66db7d8a243ca4d3d701f892f2edecccc7ae52f00c761945ec7944d9d19480f} of respondents delayed care because they could not afford health care prices. According to another study completed this year (2017) by insurance.com, that number had risen to 64{a66db7d8a243ca4d3d701f892f2edecccc7ae52f00c761945ec7944d9d19480f} and attributed the delay to high costs, the difficulty in getting an appointment, being too busy or hoping whatever issue they were dealing with would resolve itself on its own.

    What’s the Difference?

    Emergency Departments are medical treatment facilities specializing in the acute care of patients that may have life-threatening illnesses or injuries which require immediate attention or are considered to be a condition which may permanently endanger the life of an individual. Examples of the types of conditions for which an ED is appropriate include (not limited to):
    Major Trauma or Accident
    Loss of Consciousness
    Heart Attack or Chest Pain
    Uncontrollable Bleeding
    Moderate to Severe Burns
    Deep Knife or GunShot Wounds
    Convulsions, Seizures
    Severe Abdominal Pain
    Suicidal or Homicidal Feelings

    Urgent Care Facilities
    are not a substitute for emergency care. They are set up to assist patients with an illness or injury that does not appear to be life-threatening but can not wait until a patient’s primary care physician is available. Some examples of conditions include:
    Flu or Cold
    Immunizations
    Fever, Headaches, and Chills
    Sprains
    After-Hour Care
    Cuts that may require stitches
    Severe sore throat or cough
    Vomiting, diarrhea or dehydration
    Eye Irritation and Redness
    Diagnostic services, including X-rays and Lab tests

    What’s the Big Deal?

    The misuse of EDs has resulted in more than $4.4 billion in waste annually and is a contributing factor in the high cost of healthcare. An average urgent care visit generally costs between $71-$125 dollars for basic care with additional costs added for shots, x-rays, labs, prescriptions, etc while the average emergency room visit runs about $1,318. ER patients, on average, wait approximately 2.5 hours before being taken to an exam room where the wait can be hours if a more traumatic case enters the ER. Urgent care facilities normally see patients with 15-45 minutes and while there is no specific data with regards to wait time in the exam room, it is generally agreed that patients are processed much faster.

    What’s the Alternative?

    TELEMEDICINE

    Telemedicine is the remote diagnosis and treatment of patients by means of telecommunications. It has been increasing in popularity rapidly because it provides improved access and it also expands a physician’s ability to reach more patients. Telemedicine helps to reduce, or at the least, contain the cost of healthcare through better management of chronic diseases, reduced travel times and shorter hospital stays. Studies have shown that telemedicine provides services as good as those delivered in traditional in-personal consultation and in some cases, the telemedicine has provided a superior outcome and rated higher with patient satisfaction. Telemedicine can be used to treat a broad range of symptoms including:
    Colds, Cough
    Flu
    Pink Eye
    UTI
    Asthma
    Arthritic Pain
    Ankle and Arm Sprains
    Diarrhea
    Insect Bites
    Pharyngitis
    Cellulitis
    Sinusitis
    Sports Injuries
    High or Low Blood Pressure
    Sore Throat
    Gastrointestinal Issues
    Rashes
    Cuts and Abrasions
    Post Surgical Follow Up
    Prescription Refills
    Therapy and Counseling

    Telemedicine is a less expensive, equally effective, alternative especially when factoring in time lost from work or school, travel expenses, wait times and exposure to other illness when sitting in germ infested waiting or exam rooms. Patients can call in from the comfort and convenience of home or office and continue to work or engage in day to day activities until they connect with a board certified physician.

    Telemedicine services vary in price and quality.

    Checking out telemedicine providers is as important in choosing an online source as is finding the right physician. Some programs, like VHS, charge a monthly subscription with NO additional co-pays or limits on the number of calls that can be made or the length of those calls. Other providers charge a fee EACH time you call and some limit the number of minutes you can actually speak to the physician without paying additional fees. Virtual Healthcare Solutions Programs range in price from $12.99 to $45.99 a month depending on services. Other providers charge $15, 25, 40 per call with limits on the number of calls that can be made as well as the length of the calls.

  • Virtual Healthcare Solutions – The Future of Healthcare

    Virtual Healthcare Solutions… Why is it the future of healthcare?

    19646756 – medicine doctor working with modern tablet computer and virtual interface as medical concept

    The American Healthcare system is under siege and faces some huge challenges in the future. There has to be a coordinated effort on all levels to ensure high-quality healthcare for everyone despite the ever changing landscape. Consumers have to become more vigilant with regards to their own wellness and be open to ways they can take control of the obstacles impeding their healthcare experience including time away from work, travel costs and expense, and long wait times.

    Virtual Healthcare Solutions identified the need for a new paradigm within the healthcare platform and began seeking out creative options including innovative products and services to stabilize skyrocketing costs as well as necessary checks and balances for current programs including Medicare. Understanding that it is more than the presentation of new strategies or technologies, VHS is committed to education as part of implementation to increase utilization and success of programs. VHS recognizes when individuals are able to integrate their own healthcare with their lifestyles, they become empowered to manage their situations more effectively becoming more engaged in the management of their conditions.

    In June 2017, VHS partnered with an established company offering a unique way for businesses and individuals to access healthcare with or without traditional insurance. This partnership allowed VHS to empower its sales force of mostly non-traditional benefits consultants with a new set of tools that could bridge the gap between affordability and access for millions of members by providing packages including some or all of the following….

    *Telemedicine
    *Pharmacy Discounts
    *Health Advocate Solutions
    *Health Advocacy
    *Medical Bill SAver
    *NurseLine
    *Worklife Services
    *Diabetic Supplies
    *Vitamins
    *MRI & CT Scans
    *Global Travel Assistance
    *Vision
    *Dental

    For a low monthly subscription with NO contract, NO pre-existing conditions, NO waiting periods!

  • Telemedicine Defined

    Telemedicine Defined
    Telemedicine is the remote delivery of healthcare services via electronic communications allowing providers to evaluate, diagnose and treat patients remotely without an in-person visit. Utilization of Telemedicine has been rapidly increasing because of its inherent benefits:

    Increased Access – Patients have improved access and medical providers have an expanded reach.
    Cost Effective – Monthly subscription, no co-pay or deductible.

    Telemedicine has been shown to reduce the cost of healthcare through better management of chronic diseases, reduced travel times and fewer/short hospital stays.

    Improved Quality – The services delivered via telemedicine have been shown to be as good as those given by traditional consultations.

    Increased Access – 24/7/365 access. Access where you are, when you need it

    A recent survey from American Well found that 60{a66db7d8a243ca4d3d701f892f2edecccc7ae52f00c761945ec7944d9d19480f} of patients are open to using telehealth to address chronic conditions such as heart disease and diabetes as well as for regular checkups. When asked which of the three communication options available for telehealth would be most preferable (video, telephone or email) almost 70{a66db7d8a243ca4d3d701f892f2edecccc7ae52f00c761945ec7944d9d19480f} indicated they trusted video to offer the most accurate diagnosis.

    The same survey revealed that the majority of respondents (67{a66db7d8a243ca4d3d701f892f2edecccc7ae52f00c761945ec7944d9d19480f}) often delayed seeking care due to high cost, time difficulties in arranging a convenient appointment, personal schedules or simply because they assumed whatever ailment they were experiencing would resolve itself.

    Here is another great article is you’d like to learn more about Telemedicine.