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With Kaiser Permanente’s acquisition of Group Health Cooperative complete, many are curious what this means for them.  In short, Group Health insurance members will see NO changes to their plans nor benefits for 2017, but all Group Health branding will be changed to Kaiser Permanente starting in March.

If you are one of the 650,000+ members whom are impacted by this acquisition, take a look at the Acquisition Q & A that Group Health and Kaiser Permanente have put together.

Here are some highlights from their Q&A page:

What are the next steps?

In March, you’ll get a Kaiser Permanente identification card. Your member number will be the same, but you’ll use this new card for all your health care services. Your existing card is still valid, so please continue to use it until you receive your new Kaiser Permanente replacement card.

Beginning in March, the Kaiser Permanente name, brand and logo will appear in medical centers, on employee apparel, on member identification cards, on public websites and more.

When will Group Health's name change? What will the new name be?

Now that the acquisition is complete, a name change (from Group Health to Kaiser Foundation Health Plan of Washington) will be filed with the Washington Office of the Insurance Commissioner.

Beginning in March, the Kaiser Permanente name, brand and logo will appear in medical centers, on employee apparel, on member identification cards, on public websites and more.

Will existing Group Health members have the same coverage and benefits?

Yes. Becoming part of Kaiser Permanente does not change the 2017 plan or benefits Group Health members selected during 2016 Open Enrollment.

The acquisition does not affect 2017 premiums, benefits or cost shares.

Information about applicable name changes in your benefit booklets or coverage documents will be issued in a separate communication.

The three Questions and Answers above were pulled from the Group Health website.  Please view the full list of Questions and Answers on their site as they’ve done a great job trying to answer your questions.  Should you still have questions, give us a call and we’d be happy to assist you.

https://wa.kaiserpermanente.org/html/public/about

Kaiser Permanente was founded in 1945, and currently serves over 10.6 million members in eight states.  Group Health Cooperative began in 1947 and currently operates as a non-profit in Washington state.  Kaiser has pledged to give approximately $1.8B to the new not-for-profit Group Health Community Foundation to continue Group Health’s legacy of helping Washingtonians achieve better health.

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