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Frequently Asked Questions

  • Does UT CONNECT provide comprehensive coverage for medical care?

    Yes. UT CONNECT covers the same core benefits as UT SELECT. It’s a benefit for UT System employees and non-Medicare-eligible retirees living or working in Dallas, Tarrant, Collin, Denton, Parker or Rockwall counties.

    UT CONNECT is built on teamwork and service. This includes the Southwestern Health Resources network, working with the UT System Office of Employee Benefits and Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Texas (BCBSTX) to help increase value and quality of care.

  • Are there differences with UT CONNECT for 2021 – 2022?

    For 2021-2022, UT CONNECT will continue its next-level support for members. UT CONNECT members have a personal health care team (the CONNECT Team), including navigators and nurses, to help with referrals, connecting with specialists, providing answers to questions about UT CONNECT coverage, and more. If there’s a medical question, the team can call on UT Southwestern medical directors for support.

    Changes this year include:

    • Decrease in the Primary Care Physician (PCP) copay from $15 to $5
    • Increase in the specialist copay from $25 to $35
    • Increase in out-of-pocket maximums to $8,550 per individual and $17,100 per family

    Changes added last year and will continue this year:

    • Texas Health urgent care locations have opened and will continue to open throughout the Dallas/Fort Worth area and are available at a $30 copay instead of the $35 copay at non-THR urgent care.

    Other coverages and benefits from last year remain in place:

    • Ovia Health App providing maternity and family support through your entire parenthood journey.
    • Seasons of Life benefit is a new BCBSTX outreach program to help members with the passing of a loved one.
  • Can I call or email the CONNECT Team for help?
    Yes. Members can call 1-888-372-3398 or email CONNECTteam@southwesternhealth.org. The CONNECT Team number and email address are on the back of the UT CONNECT member ID cards.
  • Will it take extra time if the CONNECT Team helps with referrals to see specialists?

    No. Having the CONNECT Team available will make it simpler. They are there to take the hassle out of health care for members.

  • Where can I find a list of in-network doctors, hospitals, and urgent care centers?

    For a comprehensive list of providers, see the Doctors and Hospitals page. Providers not included on this list are considered out-of-network, and no benefits will be paid for care received from out-of-network providers. There are exceptions for emergencies (see “What if I have an emergency and can't get to a network provider?” FAQ below).

  • Which doctors are in-network?

    UT CONNECT members have access to a full range of care, through physicians and caregivers located throughout the Dallas/Fort Worth area. More than 10,000 clinicians are in-network, including:

    • Primary care physicians (e.g., family practice, general practice, and internal medicine)
    • Pediatricians
    • Cardiologists, orthopedic surgeons, neurologists, dermatologists, ophthalmologist, gynecologist, and many other types of specialists
    • Hospital-based practitioners (e.g., anesthesiologists, radiologists, pathologists, ER physicians and hospitalists)
    • Other types of caregivers such as chiropractors
    For a comprehensive list of providers, see the Doctors and Hospitals page.
  • What hospitals are part of the UT CONNECT network?

    UT CONNECT includes all UT Southwestern Medical Center (UTSW) and Texas Health hospitals, plus Children’s, Cook Children’s, and other pediatric hospitals in the Dallas/Fort Worth area. These facilities include some of the top ranked hospitals by US News and World report in our community including:

    • UTSW including all clinical faculty, clinical centers, Clements University Hospital and Zale Lipshy University Hospital
    • All Texas Health hospital locations (including Texas Health Presbyterian, Texas Health Arlington Memorial, Texas Health Harris Methodist, and many others)
    • Pediatric care through Children’s Health, Cook Children’s Medical Center, and other pediatric hospitals in the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex.
  • Which urgent care centers are part of the UT CONNECT network?

    There are more than 150 urgent care facilities in North Texas. If you need to find facilities or locations, check the Doctors and Hospitals page call the CONNECT Team 1-888-372-3398. Texas Health urgent care sites are open and available to members at a lower co-pay than other in-network urgent care facilities.

  • Are urgent care centers available outside of North Texas?

    Yes. If you need to find an urgent care facility in other parts of Texas (or any part of the United States), there are in-network providers available. A national network of urgent care providers is available to UT CONNECT members, and can be found by contacting the CONNECT Team at 1-888-372-3398 or going to the Doctors and Hospitals page.

  • Will providers in the UT CONNECT network change during the year?

    We don’t expect changes to the UT CONNECT network for 2021 – 2022 outside of normal turnover experienced by all provider networks. Provider networks change over time as physicians and caregivers join and leave the network. As a result, there are always changes, which are not unique to UT CONNECT.

  • What if I have an emergency and can't get to a network provider?

    In an emergency, go to the nearest facility for care, in or out of the network. Emergency care is always covered in a true emergency situation (e.g., heart attack, broken bones, head injuries, severe pain, severe bleeding). Please note that care for non-emergency issues are not covered if provided outside of network. For non-emergency care, there are in-network urgent care centers located throughout the United States. Also, MDLIVE® medical and behavioral health virtual visits and Nurseline is available 24/7.

  • Does UT CONNECT offer telemedicine or virtual visits? If so, what is the cost?

    Yes, through MDLIVE®. You can reach a doctor 24 hours a day, seven days a week, from anywhere in the United States. There’s no copay or extra charge to use it. MDLIVE may be accessed online, by phone, or downloading the app. Visit the UT CONNECT MDLIVE page for more information. In addition, telemedicine visits (with office visit copay) for in-network providers with telemedicine capabilities have been extended due to COVID-19. This benefit will be re-evaluated as conditions warrant and is provided to allow members to access care (for COVID or non-COVID related medical conditions) while maintaining social distancing.

  • What do I do if I am traveling and need non-emergency care?

    If you cannot reach your PCP, resources are available at no charge:

    • MEDICAL AND BEHAVIORAL HEALTH VIRTUAL VISITS: Contact MDLIVE® anywhere in the United States. Members can chat with a physician through a virtual visit, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
    • URGENT CARE CENTER (available nationwide): Call the CONNECT Team at 1-888-372-3398 or visit the Doctors and Hospitals page to locate an in-network urgent care facility nearby.
    • NURSELINE: Call the 24/7 Nurseline at 1-888-372-3398 (press option 2) for help, ranging from answers about whether a baby is colicky or what to do about an upset stomach.
  • Can I see any doctor I choose that’s part of the network?

    Yes. However, while there are some exceptions, referrals are required to see a specialist. The exceptions are OB/GYNs and Behavioral Health providers. You can obtain a referral from your PCP or seek assistance from the CONNECT Team to see a specialist.

  • Do I have to select a PCP?
    The UT CONNECT plan requires each member to be assigned a PCP. If you or your family member are new to UT CONNECT, BCBSTX will assign an in-network PCP closest to your home address. Your PCP is the provider shown on your ID Card. If you are a new member and would like to select your own PCP, or if you are currently a member looking to change your PCP, you can find one in the Provider Finder® or contact the CONNECT Team at 1-888-372-3398 for help. To select your PCP of choice through Blue Access for MembersSM online:

    1. Go to https://www.bcbstx.com/utconnect/ and click on the link at the top that says "log in" to log in or register.
    2. Once registered, Go to Coverage > Coverage and Benefits > Primary Care Provider > Edit

    To select your PCP with the personal assistance of the CONNECT Team, call 1-888-372-3398.

  • Do I need to see a PCP to authorize my annual well woman (GYN) visit?

    No. Women can schedule appointments with a gynecologist for any reason, well woman exam or other service, without the need for a referral from your PCP.

  • Do I need to see a PCP to authorize a behavioral health visit?

    No. Members and their dependents can schedule appointments with an in-network behavioral health specialist without a referral. For assistance, call the CONNECT Team at 1-888-372-3398.

  • If I’m already seeing a PCP or specialist that is in the UT CONNECT network, will I be able to continue seeing this physician? What if he/she is not accepting new patients?

    While changing from another health plan (e.g., UT SELECT) to UT CONNECT doesn’t usually impact your patient status with your current providers, there are some scenarios where changing plans could cause existing patients to be viewed as “new” patients for providers that are no longer accepting new patients.

    To determine whether your provider is accepting new patients, look up your provider on the Provider Finder®. In your provider’s profile, you will either see “Accepting New Patients” or “Not Accepting New Patients” in red text.

    If you see “Not Accepting New Patients” in red text for one of your current providers, call the CONNECT Team at 1-888-372-3398 to confirm whether changing from your current health plan to UT CONNECT will impact your status with your provider’s office.

  • What if I see a doctor who’s not in the network?

    UT CONNECT doesn’t provide coverage for care received out-of-network except for medical emergencies. If you receive non-emergency care from providers not in the network, the plan will not pay for those services.

  • What if I have trouble getting an appointment with a PCP in the UT CONNECT network?

    Call the CONNECT Team at 1-888-372-3398. Our goal is for our members to receive the care they need, when they need it.

    With more than 10,000 participating physicians and caregivers, we are confident members will be able to access care through our team, whether from a PCP, specialist or other caregiver in the network.

  • Can I choose a different PCP for each family member?

    Yes. Each covered dependent can choose their own PCP. There are more than 1,500 PCPs available for adult and pediatric needs.

  • Is it possible to change my PCP?

    Yes. Members may select a new PCP once per month. You can start seeing the new PCP the 1st of the following month. The only requirement is that the PCP be in the UT CONNECT network.

  • How long will it take to get a referral to see a specialist? Will it require an office visit with my Primary Care Physician (PCP)?
    Your CONNECT Team will work with you to get a referral in a timely manner. Based on your medical history and your PCP’s discretion, referrals may require an office visit or may be done by phone, email, or through MyChart.

    Our goal is to make this process as smooth and seamless as possible for members and providers.
  • Will I need to pay a copay each time my PCP refers me to a specialist?

    No. UT CONNECT encourages a strong relationship between patient and PCP. Our intent is not for members to incur extra costs, but to ensure that you receive the most effective and efficient care possible. In some cases, your PCP may be able to address a medical issue without a referral to a specialist.

    Keep in mind that when you enroll in UT CONNECT, your first PCP visit has a $0 copay. This first visit is at no cost to you and a great opportunity to talk with your PCP about specialty care you currently receive or anticipate needing in the future to expedite the referral process.

  • Is there coverage for urgent care and emergencies when someone travels internationally?

    Yes. UT CONNECT uses the same network for international services as UT SELECT. For more information on international coverage, visit Blue Cross Blue Shield Global® Core.

  • My child attends college outside the Dallas/Fort Worth area. If I choose UT CONNECT will my child be able to receive care while away at college?

    While emergency care, urgent care and telemedicine are available anywhere in the country, your child is still required to select a PCP in the UT CONNECT network and receive all preventive and routine care from their selected in-network PCP. The PCP may be available to provide medical advice by phone, call in prescriptions, if needed, and obtain referrals for in-network specialists.

    A few points to consider:

    • The CONNECT Team (which includes navigators and nurses) is available to provide guidance.
    • MDLIVE® and the Nurseline are available 24/7. Both are available when a member, such as a college student, isn’t in North Texas and has questions or needs help to access care.
    • There are in-network urgent care centers throughout the U.S. for non-emergency situations.
    • UT CONNECT covers out-of-network care for medical emergencies, anywhere in the world.
    • If your child requires surgery or elective procedures, these can generally be planned in advance and would need to be performed at home. The CONNECT Team can answer questions about this and provide support to access in-network care.
  • Are the annual out-of-pocket maximums the same for UT CONNECT and UT SELECT?
    Yes, the out-of-pocket maximums for both UT CONNECT and UT SELECT are the same.
  • If I enroll in UT CONNECT and turn age 65 in the middle of the plan year (Sept. 1 – Aug. 31), will I have to change to UT SELECT at that time? And does this impact my spouse's coverage?

    If you are an active UT employee, you do not have to change to UT SELECT. However, when you resign or retire – you and your dependents will need to enroll in UT SELECT. Contact your HR Benefits representative to learn more about this.

*Virtual visits may not be available on all plans. Non-emergency medical service in Montana and New Mexico is limited to interactive online video. Non-emergency medical service in Arkansas and Idaho is limited to interactive online video for initial consultation.

MDLIVE is a separate company that operates and administers virtual visits for Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Texas. MDLIVE is solely responsible for its operations and for those of its contracted providers. MDLIVE® and the MDLIVE logo are registered trademarks of MDLIVE, Inc., and may not be used without permission.