Frequently Asked Questions
Call 911 if you or a covered family member has a life threatening emergency (sudden collapse, seizure, chest pain, difficulty breathing. However, if you are not in immediate danger but believe prompt attention is required, you can contact UHS at 312-423-4200 (24 hours a day, 7 days week) and we will arrange for a doctor to speak with you. The doctor will instruct you on whether to schedule an timely appointment or to go to the emergency room. Please refer to your benefit plan documents for more information regarding emergency benefit coverage.
Where do I get my prescription insurance card?
Members with coverage through SEIU Local 1 Health Fund should contact their employer. Members covered through SEIU Local 25 Welfare Fund, SEIU Healthcare of Illinois and Indiana, and Federal employees should contact Union Health Service Member Services Department at 312-423-4200.
How can I refill my prescription?
If you purchased your prescription outside our Polk Street pharmacy, please call the pharmacy where you originally had your prescription filled. If you originally filled your prescription at our Polk Street location, please bring in your prescription containers or a list of the prescription numbers you want refilled. To avoid waiting and to have your prescriptions ready when you arrive at our pharmacy, you have the following options:
- You may refill your prescriptions online by clicking this link.
- You may call in your refill directly to UHS Polk Street Pharmacy by calling the telephone number located on your prescription container (312-423-4260) or, you may use our automated prescription refill service by punching in the prescription info directly on your telephone keypad when prompted to do so. Otherwise, you may speak directly with one of our pharmacy staff.
How can I transfer my prescription to another pharmacy?
If you originally filled your prescription at an outside pharmacy but now wish to fill your prescription with UHS Polk Street Pharmacy, call us at 312-423-4260. We will need the name and telephone number of the original pharmacy and the names/prescription numbers of your medication.
If you originally filled your prescription at our Polk Street location but now wish to fill your prescription with an outside pharmacy, call the pharmacy you wish to have your prescription transferred to. They will contact us and we will provide them all of the necessary information.
Whom should I contact if I have problems with my insurance (insurance denied, patient not covered, wrong co-pay, etc.)?
Call our Member Services Department (312-423-4200 ext. 3285). You may also contact our Polk Street Pharmacy for assistance (312-423-4260).
How can I obtain a copy of my medical record?
Come to the Medical Records Department (Polk St. location) or any UHS satellite and fill out a release of information form. You must also provide a photo identification card.
Can I obtain my record the same day I fill out the release form?
Generally, it takes 7-10 business days to complete a request. If you are requesting a single report or page it may be completed the same day.
Is there a charge for my record?
There is a charge for most cases of release for personal reasons, this charge is minimal usually less than $20 and depends on the amount of pages copied. There is not a charge for records of the past two years of health care being released to another healthcare provider for continuity of care. Any requests for greater than the two year time frame are subject to charges.
Can I sign and obtain a record of another patient?
No, the patient must fill out and sign the release of information form. If the patient gives a written authorization they can choose to have the records picked up by a third party with proper identification.
Can my records be faxed to me?
No, you must pick the records at Union Health Service with proper identification. We will fax records to a health care provider depending on the amount of copies.
How long does UHS keep my records available?
Adult records are maintained at UHS for ten years after the date of the last patient contact. Pediatric records are kept until the year of the patient’s thirtieth birthday, unless the patient continues to receive care at UHS as an adult.
Who should I contact if I have an emergency?
Call 911 if you or a family member has a life threatening emergency (sudden collapse, seizure, chest pain, difficulty breathing. However, if you are not in immediate danger but believes prompt attention is required, you can contact UHS at 312-423-4200 (24 hours a day, 7 days week) and we will arrange for a doctor to speak with you. The doctor will instruct you on whether to schedule an timely appointment or to go to the emergency room. Please refer to your benefit plan documents for more information regarding emergency benefit coverage.
When should I call for my referral?
We ask that you give the MMD three (3) to five (5) business days to process your referral. In most cases we must contact the Local Fund office to determine eligibility and wait for a response from them. It’s your responsibility to contact the Medical Management Department to check the status of your referral. We will not call you.
What if the consulting doctor wants to see me again, do I need a new referral?
Yes, you should ask the consulting doctor to send (fax –312-423-4363) a request to see you again (any future appointments) along with any other requests for services, such as labs or any other tests, to your doctor at Union Health Service, and he or she will write a referral for you.
If I have an emergency that required surgery by an out of plan provider/surgeon and he wants to see me again for a follow up visit, do I need a referral?
When UHS has authorized surgery by an out-of-plan provider, you are allowed two (2) global visits within 90 days after the original surgery, to follow up with the surgeon after any surgical procedure. You do not need a referral for those two visits. However, you must follow up with your doctor at Union Health Service to continue ongoing care or obtain a referral for further services, if appropriate, by an out of plan provider.
Why do I have to go to Union Health Service doctors? Why can’t I see any doctor I want? Why do I need a referral to see a doctor outside of Union Health Service facilities?
Your Employer has elected to provide your healthcare needs through a managed care plan. This means that a selected group of doctors and hospitals are available to you within a network to meet your healthcare needs. Your benefits are based on you utilizing this group of providers and facilities. Should you elect to seek care outside of this network of providers and facilities, your benefits may be decreased or denied and you may incur a cost for those services.
A referral is required for all services provided outside of Union Health Service facilities. The referral helps assist in guiding you to the place where the service will be performed and serves as an authorization for those services so that the provider will be compensated appropriately.
What is special about the Union Health Service Medicare program?
Union Health Service (UHS) has a Medicare program that lets members use their traditional Medicare coverage with no out-of-pocket costs for services provided at a UHS facility.
What do I need to qualify for your plan and continue my health care at UHS?
You must be enrolled in Medicare Part A and B. You either have to be 65 years old and not covered through your spouse's insurance or have Medicare because of disability for at least 2 years.
How do I get started?
Your first is to go to a local Social Security office to apply for Medicare Part B (enrollment in Part A is automatic). Then, contact the UHS Member Services Department at our Polk St. Facility (312/423-4200 Ext. 3285) for more information.
Do I need any other insurance besides this plan to be fully covered?
Yes. As for all Medicare beneficiaries, you should have Medicare supplemental coverage (offered through many insurance companies) for out-of-pocket costs that Medicare does not cover, especially Part A benefits. However, UHS covers much of the out-of-pocket costs for Part B benefits; therefore, you should talk with us to learn more about selecting supplemental coverage that meets your needs.
Do you offer prescription drug coverage?
UHS, itself, does not offer prescription drug coverage. However, UHS Medicare members can enroll in Medicare D prescription drug coverage by calling Medicare at 1-800-Medicare or visiting http://www.medicare.gov/part-d/
May I see outside physicians if I am enrolled in this plan?
Yes, UHS members can use their Medicare benefits outside of UHS.
How much will I have to pay to be enrolled? What is the annual fee and are there any copayments when I see my doctors?
Annual administrative fee is $25. Members do not have any copays for doctor's visits at UHS facilities.
Will my spouse also be covered under my Medicare plan?
Coverage for a spouse is not automatic; however, a spouse with Medicare Part A and B coverage may separately enroll in UHS.
Can a person who was never a UHS member enroll in your plan as long as he/she is on Medicare?
Yes, as long as he/she is enrolled in Medicare Part A and B.
I'm a new patient, should I bring in my Medical Records?
On your first visit at UHS, you should bring your medical records from your previous provider, along with the list of current medications you have to give your new primary care physician a more comprehensive understanding of your medical history.
Can I get a print out of all my paid copay's?
Yes, we can provide you a print-out either in person or we can mail it to your mailing address on record.
How do I add my spouse and dependents to my insurance?
In general, you should contact your employer or your union to add a spouse or other dependents to your coverage. The employer or union usually requires notification within 30 days of the qualifying event and documentation such as a marriage license or birth certificate.
Can I change my physician?
Yes, you can change your primary care or specialty physician at any time, by contacting the Member Services Department.
How long does it take to get an appointment for a complete physical?
Completing an annual physical exam will depend on the primary care physician and the UHS location. On our main Polk Street location, scheduling the physical exam takes approximately three to four months. Our satellite appointments are normally available sooner than at Polk Street location.
Do I need a referral to see a specialty doctor?
Yes, you need a referral if it's your first time to see this doctor at the UHS facility. For other facilities, you need a referral every time you see a specialty doctor.
How long does it take for a referral to be approved?
Approval of a referral usually takes three to five business days.
Is there a co-pay for my physician visit or any other type of visit?
You may have a co-pay based on your insurance plan. Please check with your group. You may also refer to your plan documents or call our Member Services Department at 312-423-4200 ext. 3285.
Do I need my UHS membership and pharmacy cards and how do I obtain them?
The UHS membership card works a little differently than the pharmacy card. Although you have to be a member to receive UHS services, you are not actually required to use the card, itself, to receive the covered services; however, it helps you streamline the medical provider’s check-in process with needed coverage information. On the other hand, the pharmacy card is required for your pharmacy benefits. Pharmacy cards will automatically be mailed to all members that have a pharmacy benefit. The UHS membership cards can be obtained in several ways. Some groups receive a UHS membership card in packets mailed to them at the time they become new members or renew their coverage. All members can obtain new or replacement cards at the UHS Polk Street facility or by mail upon request. The UHS Member Services Department will assist you with requests for new or replacement pharmacy cards as well as the UHS membership cards.
If I am covered under the pharmacy plan, how can I find out if my drugs are covered?
The covered drugs are identified on a list that is called the “formulary”. The formulary can be found our website or we can fax a copy to you.
Which clinic is the closest to me?
Please consult our website which lists all available primary care locations.
How do I submit a complaint?
You can submit a complaint letter in person and mail it to the attention of the Member Services Department, 1634 W. Polk St., Chicago, Illinois 60612.
What should I do when I receive a statement from a provider indicating that they do not have my insurance information and that the balance shown is the patient’s responsibility?
You should contact the phone number listed on the statement and give them your insurance information. There are many instances that the provider includes a space on the statement where you can list the information and return the form to the provider. The provider will use the information to bill your insurance.
What should I do when I receive an Explanation of Benefits (EOB) from the Local’s Claim Office that indicates I am responsible for the Total Patient Responsibility amount, but the comment at the bottom of the form indicates the claim should be submitted to Union Health Service Insurance Department?
The EOB in this case is simply informing you that the provider has been notified that the charges are UHS’ responsibility and should be billed to UHS at our main Polk Street Office address. No other action is required of you at this time. All Plans are subject to Coordination of Benefits. Always follow up with your UHS Primary Care Physician for emergency services to avoid denials for unauthorized out-of-network follow-up care.
If I am being treated or have received treatment for a work-related injury or illness by a Union Health Service physician, and have been referred to an outside provider for additional care, who pays my bills?
Your Employer’s Worker’s Compensation Carrier is responsible for paying your bills. Make sure that you coordinate with your employer regarding any statements you receive from your provider.
How will I submit claims for an illness or injury caused by someone else that might be liable (such as, an auto accident)?
The UHS Claims Department (sometime call the Insurance Department), (312) 423 4200 will help to coordinate and explain how to handle such circumstance. the Subrogation policy regarding your medical bills if and when it applies to your Third Party injury.
What do I have to do regarding Disability pay for a work-related injury?
Please contact our Claims Office at 312 423-4200 Ext. 4262, an adjuster is available to advise and assist you with the process.
Who pays my medical bills if my Worker’s Compensation carrier denies them?
Your regular health insurance plan will consider the claims once the proper information regarding the denial has been received.