Changes are here for some people with individual Preferred Provider Organization, or PPO, plans with Blue Cross Blue Shield of Texas. Around 5,000 to 7,000 local policies will be affected. One local health care center is now stepping up to handle the extra volume.
"We wish they did not have to deal with this," said Allen Patterson, CEO at the Community Healthcare Center in Wichita Falls. "We see this as an opportunity to do what we are meant to do and that is to serve our community."
For those switching policies to Health Maintenance Organization, or HMO plans, primary care physicians are limited. The Community Healthcare Center is one of the few that will accept the new policies.
"We know that we need to be able to gear up and help this community throw, especially the people being impacted but through this crisis in their lives."
Officials at the center said they have a number of medical providers ready to pick up the pace.
"We have a total of nine medical providers, four dentists, and a licensed clinical supervisor," said Patterson. "So we have quite a few folks here to stand up and meet the need especially on the medical level."
While the new changes might mean longer waiting times, officials said that's something they will be working hard to fix.
"We have the facility space to hire every bit of three providers… if we did that they could take 12,000 to 15,000 more patients," said Patterson.
The actual number of people they are expecting to care for is still yet to be seen. If the policy change affects you, you can head to the Community Healthcare Center Thursday for an open house.
The open house runs from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. For questions on whether your policy is impacted click here. The healthcare center is located at 200 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. in Wichita Falls.