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Plan Changes for Yakima Members

For many LifeWise members in Yakima, important plan changes are coming for 2024. See what’s new.
October 18, 2023   |   2 minute read
A mother holding her baby on her lap sit on a couch talking to a medical professional.

Yakima members, get access to the same local doctors and benefits at a lower price for 2024. 

MultiCare recently purchased what was previously known as Yakima Valley Memorial Hospital. Under MultiCare, the hospital is now MultiCare Yakima Memorial Hospital. 

The providers within the hospital system will largely stay the same under MultiCare’s ownership. 

What this mean for LifeWise members

MultiCare is not in network for LifeWise Essential or Cascade plans which use the LifeWise Primary Network. They are, however, in network for Cascade Select plans, which use the LifeWise Alpine Network. 

To avoid offering plans that do not have access to the largest provider in the region, MultiCare Yakima Memorial Hospital, we are discontinuing LifeWise Essential and Cascade plans in 2024. Members who are currently on these plans will be moved over to a Cascade Select plan for 2024 so they may continue to see providers at MultiCare Yakima Memorial Hospital. 

Cascade Select Plans have the same benefit design and the same deductible, copayments, and coinsurance rates for a lower monthly premium. This means you pay less for the same benefits. The main difference between the plans is the network. 

What is a network and what is the difference between LifeWise Primary and LifeWise Alpine networks? 

A network is a group of medical providers, such as doctors, hospitals, labs, and therapists that contract with a health plan to provide services to its members at negotiated rates. 

For Yakima County specifically, LifeWise Primary and LifeWise Alpine networks are nearly identical—meaning that, within Yakima, you will have access to the same providers regardless of what network you are on. 

Outside of Yakima County, the networks vary more. If you regularly travel outside of Yakima County for care, this is an important distinction. The LifeWise Primary network in other areas of the state is generally a broader network offering access to a larger number of providers. The LifeWise Alpine network outside of Yakima County is generally narrower, meaning you will have access to a smaller number of providers in counties such as King or Snohomish counties. 

If you do not regularly travel outside of Yakima for care, you can enjoy a lower monthly payment for access to the same benefits you already use. 

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