Welcome to September, the first month of the fall season. The name September comes from the Latin word “septem,” meaning seven, as it was the seventh month of the Roman calendar, which began with March. There are 30 days in the month of September, which starts on the same day of the week as December each year but does not end on the same day of the week as any other month in the year. Labor Day is the most well-known holiday in September. It is observed every year on the first Monday in September. On Labor Day, we honor the value of labor by putting aside our thoughts for an extra-long weekend. Labor Day is a celebration of you, the American worker! It was envisioned by the founders to honor the American worker, the driving engine behind one of the world’s most productive economies, and the American work ethic that has resulted in one of the highest standards of living globally. Take this day of honor to reflect on all your hard work; after all, work is where and how we spend much of our time.
How do you locate a medical provider for care with your LAFRA PPO medical plan? To locate a PPO provider (physician, facility, laboratory, etc.) nearest you, contact HealthComp (Relief Association location) at (866) 995-2372 or access HealthComp’s website. Alternatively, you can visit http://www.anthem.com/ca/find-care/, which is located under the medical drop-down menu of the LAFRA website. You can also contact your provider to verify if they are a participating network provider. If you desire, you can choose to go out of the network to locate a provider. The Relief PPO Medical Plan offers you the choice of using preferred providers, referred to as “PPO,” or out-of-network providers, referred to as “non-PPO.” Using preferred providers will lower your costs, as your benefits will be based on the negotiated fee structure in effect at the time services are rendered. If you use non-PPO providers, your benefits will be based on the plan’s scheduled amount. Your out-of-pocket costs using a non-PPO provider are usually higher than with a PPO provider. If you are referred to another provider by one of your in-network providers or someone tells you a provider is a PPO provider, please do not accept care until you have confirmed that the provider is, in fact, a contracted PPO provider.
It is important to understand that not all providers within a particular medical group or hospital are preferred providers. For instance, when selecting a PPO Hospital, always check with the PPO network to determine if other providers operating within that facility (e.g., anesthesiologists, radiologists, physicians, etc.) are PPO or non-PPO. We understand that in an emergency, you may not always be able to take the time to locate a PPO provider. If you incur an out-of-pocket cost beyond the copay or deductible for an emergency, please reach out to LAFRA so that we can take a closer look at your claim. You always have the right to choose between PPO (network) and non-PPO (out-of-network) providers.
If you are traveling outside of California and need medical care, save this information: If you or your dependents are traveling outside California and need to access medical care, visit the website bcbs.com and select the option for United States, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. You can also contact BCBS at 1-800-810-2583. What if you are traveling outside the United States? Go to bsbcglobalcore.com or call 1-800-810-2583.
What if you receive care from a doctor or hospital who is not part of the Blue Cross/Blue Shield Global Core Program?
1. You will need to pay upfront in full for your care.
2. Download an international claim form at bcbsglobalcore.com or obtain a form by calling Member Services using the number on your ID card.
3. Fill out the claim form and send it along with the original bills to the Blue Cross Blue Shield Global Core Service Center.
4. If you need additional assistance, please call (800)-442-7247.
Important Announcement – The Firefighters First Credit Union (FFCU) has been producing and distributing the LAFD shift calendars for its members and the fire department for years. FFCU has also partnered with the Fire Sync App to provide a free digital shift calendar application, allowing its users to track sick time, holidays, traded shifts, compensated time off, training, and more in an updated format. This year, FFCU has decided to stop production and distribution of the LAFD shift calendars. In their absence, LAFRA and UFLAC are collaborating to continue providing the calendars for our members. After a discussion of the project, a collective decision was made by LAFRA and UFLAC to solely print the larger 12” x 19” station calendars and distribute them to LAFD work and administrative locations. For members who still prefer a paper calendar, a more compact 8-1/2” x 11” version will be offered online for downloading and printing as needed. The pocket and business card calendars will no longer be produced. However, the FFCU Fire Sync App will be available to serve in a similar manner and provide expanded functionality. Thank you for your patience and understanding as LAFRA and UFLAC collaborate on this project.
We’ve got some incredible news to share regarding our LAFRA Wellness Program! Effective the first part of November, we are transitioning to the Sharecare Total Fitness program, offered in partnership with FitOn Health! Here’s a sneak peek of some of the highlights:
🌟 Access to 14,000+ Gyms and Studios: Access to gyms and studios, including 24 Hour Fitness, Crossfit, Gold’s Gym, The Bar Method, LA Fitness, and many more.
🌟 Fuel Your Body Right: Personalized meal planning, nutrition guidance, and resources through the digital FitOn Health app to help you make mindful choices for a healthier lifestyle.
🌟 Teen Fitness: Access for young fitness enthusiasts aged 13-17.
More exciting details are on the horizon – stay tuned for updates on the transition process, registration, gym network, and app download instructions coming to you in October. Get ready to ignite your motivation, redefine your limits, and embrace a happier, healthier you with Sharecare Total Fitness FitOn Health.
Dates to Remember:
• LAFD Memorial Car Show–September 10, 2023
• IAFF Fallen Firefighters Memorial—September 16, 2023
• SOCAL FF Over the Line—October 4, 2023
• Scott Souter Charity Golf Tournament—October 9, 2023
• California Firefighters Memorial Ceremony—October 14, 2023
• LAFD Invitational Golf Tournament – October 16, 2023