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The Whole Health Story: The Health Plan as Partner

March 31, 2022
UniCare talks with industry experts to pull the curtain back on health plans

A conversation with Dr. Bernard Bettencourt, UniCare’s Medical Director.

This article is part of a new blog series from UniCare, “The Whole Health Story,” where we talk with various members of the UniCare team and other leading health industry experts to dive into the inner workings of health benefit organizations like ours that advance health and dig deeper into what whole health means. 

 
At AHIP’s meeting last fall, I raised the issue that people don’t view their health plan as a partner. Nothing could be further from the truth as that is exactly who we want to be, and who we have become – a partner in your lifetime health journey. We’re not here just when you need a claim paid, or to find out if a service is covered or a doctor is in network. We’re a health company focused on improving the health of the people and communities we serve.
 
Doctors and hospitals aren’t equipped to do this as well as a health plan, and it’s rather unfair to have that expectation of them. Their focus is on providing clinical care on an individual basis, one person at a time, at their office. The chief medical officer of a hospital once confided to me, “we take great care of the patient when they’re here in the hospital, but once they leave we don’t have any idea what happens to them out there.”
 
That’s where we come in. We are uniquely positioned to focus on the whole health of a person throughout life’s journey.
 
It’s our job to make sure members are getting what they need not only from their healthcare providers, but also in promoting health in all aspects of their lives. We’re here to help coordinate your care. We’re here to help you navigate your benefits. We’re here to be your guide on your healthcare journey.
 
We care about how we can promote better health changes in your life – or be there as a resource for you – so you can take ownership of your health and avoid more trips to the doctor’s office or hospital.
 
Please become familiar with your health benefits and all they have to offer, and lean on us as a resource and a partner throughout your healthcare journey.