Family navigating Regence naturopathic coverage



Posted on February 24, 2014 at 1:42 AM

Updated Monday, Feb 24 at 6:18 AM

SEATTLE -- An error by Regence Health Care has left some customers frustrated, confused and left with the wrong information about their policy.

Seattle's Joni Broeker could not love her little guy Otis more. She only wants the best for him and. to her, that means giving him a naturopathic doctor. The Broekers bought individual coverage for Otis because their naturopath was in network.
"The naturopaths that we have seen really provide that level of care that a mother would give but with the amazing education they have behind them," said Broeker.
So you can imagine the shock when she called Regence healthcare just to check on her policy and heard, "She's considered a specialist so she absolutely cannot be Otis' primary care physician."
Broeker thought there must be a mistake.
"I have personally called four times my husband has called three times," she said.
But it was always the same news. Regence told her after the transition to the Affordable Care Act (ACA), naturopaths were considered specialist. Her visits could now cost $175 instead of the usual $35.
KING 5 called Regence and got this response:
"During the transition to the new ACA plans, an error was made in the way some types of primary care doctors were classified in our claims system, including naturopaths. We are aware of this error, and have been working to correct it." 
Regence said it's still figuring out how many customers are affected and is correcting the situation.
If you have questions about your health plan, you can contact the State Health Insurance Commission. It's like the Better Business Bureau for insurance. You can send your questions here.