Kaiser has implemented a change to cost sharing for HSA-qualified high-deductible health plans. For Kaiser members with these plans, some scheduled, non-preventive phone and video visits are now subject to the deductible. Kaiser is making this change in how they charge for these services to better align with IRS rules for HSA-qualified plans.
Beginning January 1, 2018 or when your Kaiser Permanente plan renews in 2018, until members meet their deductible, affected members are now charged for all video visits and some telephone appointments with Kaiser Permanente physicians -- just as for other non-preventive care services. They are now charged for video appointments of all types. They are now charged for phone appointments, but not for
1) phone calls related to a next-day, in-person appointment, or for
2) phone calls that occur within 7 days following a related in-person visit.
Once they reach their deductible, they pay nothing for video visits and phone appointments for the remainder of the plan year.
There will continue to be no additional cost for many other services Kaiser members currently enjoy, including:
- Emailing the doctor’s office with nonurgent questions
- Medical advice by phone, available 24/7
- Phone and video outreach made by a doctor, such as for discussing lab results
How much do they pay for video visits and phone appointments? What they’ll pay will depend upon the service received, the length of the consultation, and whether or not they have met their deductible. Usually, scheduled phone and video visits cost less than in-person visits. If they would like an estimate for a phone or video visits before they schedule one, members may call Kaiser Permanente Member Services at 1-800-777-7902 (TTY 711). After the video or phone appointment, they’ll get a bill from Kaiser Permanente for any deductible amount owed. For general questions about phone and video visits, visit kp.org/getcare to read about routine care.