HMO Blue TexasSM name change to Blue EssentialsSM and Product Update

October 14, 2016

Effective January 1, 2017, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Texas (BCBSTX) will change the name of the HMO Blue TexasSM network to Blue EssentialsSM. Existing HMO Blue Texas agreements will remain in effect under the new Blue Essentials name. This notification of the name change does not require any action on your part. As with any name change, there will be a transition period before the HMO Blue Texas name will cease to exist. You will continue to see HMO Blue Texas collateral information for a period of time in 2017.

The Blue Essentials benefit plan (formerly HMO Blue Texas) will maintain the same features including:

  • Product design and benefits are not changing.
  • Members are still required to select a primary care physician and get referrals for services with network providers.
  • No out-of-network coverage, except for emergency services.
  • Support, tools and guidance are available to help our members make informed decisions and the best use of their benefits.

Additionally, there is a new benefit plan option effective January 1, 2017, that will be called Blue Essentials Access. This new benefit plan option allows "open access" within the Blue Essentials provider network (formerly HMO Blue Texas) where PCP selection and referrals are NOT required. All other HMO requirements remain unchanged.

BCBSTX will be providing additional information in the coming weeks on the provider website at and in Blue Review, located on

If you have any questions, please contact your local Network Management Representative.