The University of Chicago offers a choice of five medical plans. Two are preferred provider organization (PPO), and two are health maintenance organization (HMO) plans. View a side-by-side comparison of all the medical plans.
Preferred Provider Organization (PPO)
A PPO gives you freedom of choice. You choose the doctors and hospitals you want to see for your medical care. The amount paid by the plan depends on the services you receive and the amount charged by the provider. When you choose providers in the network, your cost share is less. Unlike an HMO, you are covered, even if you get care outside the network. The plan provides true insurance for the cost of medically necessary treatment for illness and injury, while maintaining your freedom to choose providers. PPOs:
- Give you the maximum choice of doctors and Hospitals.
- Focus on treating illness and injury.
- Provide discounts and pays more if you use providers who are part of the network.
- Provide you access to care anywhere you live, work, or travel across the country and around the world.
Health Maintenance Organization (HMO)
The University also offers two HMO-style medical plans: the University of Chicago Health Plan (UCHP) and HMO Illinois. An HMO is a managed care group that provides services and supplies through its own network of doctors, hospitals and other health care facilities. HMOs only provide in-network coverage. It covers your expenses only if you go to a health care provider within its network of providers (unless it is a life-threatening emergency).
When you enroll in an HMO plan, you will be required to select a Primary Care Physician who coordinates all of your medical care. If you go to a doctor or hospital outside of your HMO without prior approval, you will not receive any benefits from the plan, except in an emergency. HMOs:
- Limit your choice of doctors and hospitals to only those who have contracted with the HMO to charge specific rates.
- Reduce medical care costs by keeping you healthy through wellness care such as physical exams.
- Reduce unnecessary treatment by coordinating your care through your Primary Care Physician.