Silver Sneakers being droped by AARP recommended insurer

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Re: Silver Sneakers being droped by AARP recommended insurer

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Message 61 of 679

No, you did not understand my post. I am not in Medicare Advantage, I am in AARP Medicare Supplement.
Last year our plans in Illinois were pulled out of Silver Sneakers and offered gym memberships in one gym for 50% off (LA Fitness membership was the deluxe multistate access to all LAF locations). Today I received a notice from AARP Medicare Supplement saying that they will start a new program called At Your Best by UHC. It includes "Renew Active" access with standard access to a network of gyms and fitness locations for free. Like Silver Sneakers, they will again let members sign up for access at multiple locationgyms. 

As I said, last year they were not letting members access the list of participating locations in Optum Fitness until January 1st, meaning we were renewing our insurance without knowing how far the closest gym was. But there is a Renew Active website that can be accessed now and lets you search by distance from your zipcode. The website is -

www.myrenewactive.com

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Re: Silver Sneakers being droped by AARP recommended insurer

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Message 62 of 679

Christine,

 

Have you found any additional info on what type of service the supplemental plan will offer?

 

John

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Re: Silver Sneakers being droped by AARP recommended insurer

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Message 63 of 679

The key take away from your post is that it only pertains to those with the Medicare ADVANTAGE plan.  Those of us who have Medicare Supplemental are now receiving notices that as of 1/1/20, we will have free access to some gyms.  Two different programs.  I did try to get information on what gyms in my area will be participating in the FREE program and that information was not available yet.

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Re: Silver Sneakers being droped by AARP recommended insurer

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Message 64 of 679

I'm in the Chicago area. Unlike last year, when members not yet part of Healthyourway (Optum) couldn't see the list of participating gyms (I did call last fall, got an agent at UHC, and she admitted they were still signing up centers to participate) , the new upcoming gym program (Renew Active, part of At Your Best) lets you do a lookup without having a logon (like the Silver Sneakers website). If you go to www.myrenewactive.com  and click on "Find a Fitness Location" you can look for gyms near you.I'm in the Northern suburbs and got 26 centers within 10 miles of me. The majority were chains like LA Fitness, Planet Fitness, Anytime, some smaller gyms a number of park districts. 

The best thing about Silver Sneakers was that you could join multiple gyms, and though I wasn't thrilled about paying a monthly fee this year for my gym (which I picked because it does have Silver Sneakers classes), I was angy that I could only pick one gym membership where I could pay the 'discounted' price (they jacked up the regular price, offered multiple locations in the chain and then charged half of a deluxe membership). I lost access to an indoor walking track around the same time, so the most heartening thing was in the FAQs, where it looks like UHC will return to allowing participation at multiple locations  - 

Can I use multiple participating fitness locations? 

Yes, you can visit multiple participating fitness locations within our network. Simply present your confirmation code at each participating fitness location you want to use. They can then enroll you in the Renew Active program and provide you with access.

 

The FAQs also say that 'standard access' will once again be free - 

What does Renew Active offer? 

Members can visit a participating fitness location to receive standard access at no additional cost. This includes access to a variety of exercise equipment, classes and group activities. You choose the programs and location that are right for you. Amenities may vary by location. You also receive access to BrainHQ, which features fun, online brain exercises and activities designed to keep your mind active. You will be able to access Renew Active beginning on the effective date of your eligible Medicare Advantage health plan.

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Re: Silver Sneakers being droped by AARP recommended insurer

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Message 65 of 679
UPDATE from my 10/18 comment: I've had Anthem Plan G for almost a year. Other than the first $185./year, it pays for EVERYTHING except, of course Part D Prescriptions. I'm VERY happy with Anthem and with Plan G. I was still getting bills for co-pays from UHC in April and May 2019 from the year before! Why they took so long, I'll never know, but once I was totally on Anthem and paid my $185, I've not paid a penny more for anything. So nice not to worry about whether I have the money for the co-pays/deductibles when I need medical care! .
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Message 66 of 679

Yes, you are correct. I live in Chicago and when I still had UHC, only one club in my neighborhood participated in Renew and offered free membership. Another club told me I'd get a discount, not free. I took a pass. As I said in one of my earlier posts, I was able to switch plans so I dropped UHC, changed to Original Medicare and my supplemental (Humana) has SilverSneakers. It's so important to stay physically active as we age. 

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Re: Silver Sneakers being droped by AARP recommended insurer

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Message 67 of 679

I don't know where you live, but the "Renew" program is not free for most of us.  It is "discounted" in most areas but perhaps some gyms go ahead and offer it for free?

Anyway, the new thing is still the "Renew" but they are calling all the "new" features "At Your Best".  I'm sure, in response to the outcry of UHC dropping Silver Sneakers, they said OK, we'll give you gym membership for fee.  The question is, what gyms and how long will this last?  We all have to remember, even if you went to Blue Cross other other insurance companies, there is NO REQUIREMENT that they keep offering free gym membership.  It is strictly their choice.  So if an insurance company wants to drop it, they can at any time.

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Re: Silver Sneakers being droped by AARP recommended insurer

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Message 68 of 679
Maybe a local senior citizen's organization would know how to help finding an agent.
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Re: Silver Sneakers being droped by AARP recommended insurer

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Message 69 of 679

The letter I received back in February called their program "HealthYourWay.com" This is the trickery these places employ, keep changing names so consumers don't know what they are getting. Or not getting.

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Re: Silver Sneakers being droped by AARP recommended insurer

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Message 70 of 679

I gave up on AARP/UHC months ago and went with a high deductible plan from Blue Cross/Blue Shield. The cost of the AARP Plan F was skyrocketing and is projected to do so far into the future. That is because new entrants into Medicare are not allowed to sign up for it so the pool of participants will be just the aging population and not offset by younger, healthier people. The substantial money I save will fund a reserve to cover the deductible if necessary, pay for a membership to a health club close to me and have some left over. I talked with the people who handle insurance at my doctor's office and they said BC/BS is a good insurance company. 

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