Utilization management is at the heart of how you access the right care, at the right place and at the right time. It includes:
We use evidence-based clinical standards of care to make sure you get the health care you need.
What Is Prior Authorization?
Sometimes you may need to get approval from Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois (BCBSIL) before we will cover certain inpatient, outpatient and home health care services and prescription drugs. This is called prior authorization, preauthorization, pre-certification or prior approval. These terms all refer to the requirements that you may need to meet before treatment may begin.
Who Requests Prior Authorization?
Usually, your health care providers will take care of prior authorization before they perform a service. But, it’s always a good idea to check if your providers have the needed approval.
If your providers aren’t in-network, you’ll be responsible for getting the prior authorization. If you don’t, we may not cover the cost. To make sure your provider is in-network, check Provider Finder®.
You or your provider can request a renewal of a prior authorization up to 60 days before it expires.
BCBSIL contracts with outside vendors, including Carelon Medical Benefits Management® (Carelon), eviCore® healthcare and Magellan Healthcare for certain prior authorization services.
How You Can Request Prior Authorization
Check with us to see if your provider has requested prior authorization before you get any services.
If your health care provider has not requested prior authorization, you can request it. Call the number listed on your BCBSIL member ID card. Our Customer Service will help you begin the process.
What Happens During the Prior Authorization Process?
BCBSIL reviews the requested service or drug to see if it’s medically necessary and appropriate for your needs. This review does not replace the advice of your provider.
We need the following information to complete a prior authorization request:
- Your name, subscriber ID number and date of birth
- Your provider’s name, address and National Provider Identifier (NPI)
- Information about your medical or behavioral health condition
- The proposed treatment plan, including any diagnostic or procedure codes (your provider can help you with these)
- The date you’ll receive service and the estimated length of stay (if you are being admitted)
- The place you’re being treated