February 2, 2018

Primary care providers: Not everyone has one, but everyone should

When it comes to an individual's health care, a primary care provider can be thought of as the first line of defense for overall health and wellness. An individual's PCP should provide consistency and an in-depth knowledge of the individual's medical history. In addition, not only are PCPs the go-tos for general medical care -- providing ongoing preventive care (covered at 100 percent by Purdue medical plans), treating illnesses, helping manage ongoing chronic issues -- but they also can connect individuals to other providers for more specialized care if needed.

Identifying a PCP also is especially valuable in regard to Purdue's Healthy Boiler Wellness Program, as it is one of the three objectives that must be completed in order to qualify for incentives. Employees who already have a PCP can simply log on to Healthy Boiler portal, click the “Earn” tab in the top navigation and see step 1 for instructions on how to identify their primary care provider.

Employees who currently do not have a primary care provider can consider these tips to help them choose a PCP who is right for them:

* Network: Is the PCP in network? Out-of-pocket expenses will be lower if the provider is in network.

* Quality: Check patient reviews to get an understanding of the quality of care provided by said provider.

* Location: Is the provider’s office conveniently located near home or work?

Castlight is a free resource that can help employees and their covered spouses find the above information, find high-quality providers, know the costs beforehand and have all of their health resources in one easily accessible spot. Once registered, individuals have access to their recent claim information; health plan details; the ability to search for a provider, dentist, service or condition to find the best care possible; and much more.

“Castlight is one of the many health-related resources we have made available in an effort to increase the overall health and wellness of our entire Purdue community,” says Candace Shaffer, director of benefits in Human Resources. “The tool empowers employees, allows them to search and find the best, most cost-effective care for themselves and their families and puts them in prime position to become better health care consumers.”

The Center for Healthy Living on Purdue’s West Lafayette campus is an example of another available health care resource. The center provides numerous health management and wellness offerings throughout the year at no cost to benefits-eligible faculty, staff and their spouses covered on a Purdue health plan. Providers at the CHL also can be selected as an employee’s PCP if desired. Regional campus employees have the ability to engage in the programs via phone. Additionally, wellness programs and resources are available at the Fort Wayne and Purdue Northwest campuses.

“Identifying a primary care provider will help employees (and their dependents if applicable) be aware of their health risks and become more active in maintaining/improving their overall health,” says Keith Helton, M.D., chief executive officer at One to One Health, the vendor of the Center for Healthy Living.

To better serve patients, the center is open 7 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday. Lab hours are 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday. For medical consultation after hours or on weekends, employees can contact the Anthem nurse line at 888-279-5449 for assistance or use LiveHealth Online for a virtual appointment.

Healthy Boiler Wellness Program

In 2018, Purdue, in partnership with the Center for Healthy Living on Purdue’s West Lafayette campus, introduced its Healthy Boiler Wellness Program to promote wellness within the University population. Healthy Boiler encourages employees to engage in their health and wellness by identifying a primary care provider, having an annual physical and biometrics screening and participating in wellness activities; offering benefits-eligible faculty and staff -- as well as spouses covered on a Purdue medical plan -- the opportunity to earn up to $500 in incentives to participate.

* Select a primary care provider: $50 employee only; $100 employee and spouse.

* Complete a physical and biometrics: $100 employee only; $200 employee and spouse.

* Complete two preapproved wellness activities: $100 employee only; $200 employee and spouse.

To stay up-to-date on all things Healthy Boiler, visit the Healthy Boiler Portal and follow the Healthy Boiler Purdue blog.


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