Question: Will Covered California include vision care in 2014?
Answer: Yes. Pediatric vision benefits will be imbedded in the medical plans offered in the Covered California exchange. Benefits include an eye examination at no cost and a $100 maximum eyeglass benefit, Additionally, vision plans for adults will be offered on a voluntary stand-alone basis. In August, The exchange board first voted to allow stand-alone vision plans to be sold to small businesses. However, it decided not to allow the plans to be sold to individual customers. Exchange staffers said that the agency decided that the task of splitting subsidies was too difficult to manage in the first year of operating the exchange. After the board’s decision, Vision Service Plan (VSP) and Superior Vision Services, protested against the exchange board’s original decision. In late October, the Exchange board decided to approve policy changes that will allow the sale of stand-alone vision plans to individual customers as well as small businesses.