The Empire Plan and the New York State Health Insurance Program (NYSHIP) is best known as a decades-long provider of health insurance for state and local New York government employees. It ranks number one as the largest public employer health insurance program in the United States, with over 1.2 million insured. Those enrolled in NYSHIP insurance programs include not only active employees, but coverage also extends to retirees, dependents and dependent survivors.
First established in 1957, coverage under NYSHIP was initially only available to state employees. The following year, the company expanded its policies to local government employees and school districts. Three decades later, in 1986, NYSHIP rolled out the Empire Plan, expanding coverage to an even larger group of public New York employees. This growth caused many to herald the Empire Plan as one of the most reliable and inclusive insurance companies that New Yorkers recognize today.
It is estimated that as of 2015, over 800 public employers offer coverage via the Empire Plan.
The NYSHIP Empire Plan differs from other state for-profit insurance companies in that its rates have largely stayed constant. The annual net premium increase over the last several years was only 4%, on average. This low premium rate does not come at a cost of impeccable service, as subscribers have access to a network of over 190,000 providing doctors, surgeons and specialists from which to choose.
The Empire Plan sets itself apart by supporting New York’s most invaluable public employees beyond merely local government agencies. NYSHIP covers those who make up the very fabric of our community, including public school teachers, local librarians, firemen, public park and utility workers.
The Empire Plan has a reputation not only for providing an all-inclusive health insurance plan, but an affordable one, too. Members are often covered for both in-patient and outpatient hospital stays for their medical, surgical or maternity needs. Members can locate doctors and hospitals via Empire’s “Participating Provider” network. If medical services happen to fall outside of network, members can opt for the Basic Medical Program.
Dr. Bennett and his staff are pleased to work with state and local public employees covered under the NYSHIP Empire Plan, and will ensure that you take full advantage of your health insurance benefits. As an out-of-network office, our goal is to provide excellent care at the most affordable cost to the patient. Empire Plan members often have far-reaching benefits, relatively low co-pays and access to an excellent prescription drug program.
Our staff is always on hand to help you make sense of your policy. We will take the time to make sure you understand your benefits, and what to expect both medically and financially. Being an out-of-network provider allows us to provide more time and attention to your care than you would receive with an in-network office.
Allow our highly-specialized insurance team to navigate the ins and outs of your health care policy. We will ask the right questions, speak directly to your insurance company and get the most comprehensive answers. Most importantly, we will ensure that you receive the maximum coverage with the smallest amount of out-of-pocket expense to you. Don’t forget that not only will we assist you with your insurance policy needs, but we will also coordinate your appointments, call to remind you of upcoming visits, and answer any and all questions about your care from your initial consultation to your final follow-up appointments.
Dr. Bennett and our staff view public servants like teachers, police officers, firemen and librarians as in integral part of New York City and the state of New York as a whole, which is why he and his staff will work within the parameters of your plan to serve you, just as you serve your community.
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