myUCLAhealth Messaging Costs
How to know when a message to your provider will be billed to your insurance, and how much it will cost.
Medical Advice Through myUCLAhealth Messages
Health care is more virtual than ever before, and people are taking advantage of the quick access to their doctors through online patient portals, such as myUCLAhealth (MyChart). Messaging your provider through MyChart is easy and convenient and can be a great alternative to an in-person or video visit.
Cost of medical advice delivered through myUCLAhealth messages
While most messages patients send to providers through myUCLAhealth are processed quickly and never billed to insurance, those that take time and medical expertise are considered a type of virtual care — and are treated as such.
Insurance companies accept virtual care as a legitimate and useful way for people to get medical advice. Health insurance covers many types of virtual care, including:
- Video visits
- Phone call visits
- Medical advice messaging (through myUCLAhealth)
- Remote patient monitoring programs
Which types of myUCLAhealth messages are billed to insurance?
Providers can answer most myUCLAhealth messages in a few minutes or less, but some require more time and medical expertise. Here’s how to know if your message will be billed:
|Free myUCLAhealth Messages
|Billable myUCLAhealth Messages
|Prescription refill request
|A new problem or symptom that needs to be evaluated by a doctor
|Message that prompts your doctor to recommend a visit
|Prescribing a new medication
|Follow-up treatment after a recent operation (within the last 90 days) with exceptions for some surgeries
|Conducting a chronic disease check-in
|Messages about an issue addressed during a visit in the last seven days
|Addressing a flare-up or change in a chronic condition
|Update for your doctor that doesn’t require a response
|Question that takes only a few minutes to answer
Keep this general rule of thumb in mind: If it takes more than a few minutes for your health care provider to respond to your message, your insurance may be billed. Your insurance will not get billed for a myUCLAhealth message if your message doesn’t require medical advice or it can be answered quickly.
How much do myUCLAhealth messages cost?
If there’s a cost associated with your myUCLAhealth message, the amount you’ll end up paying varies. For some patients, even if a message is billed to insurance, they don’t have to pay anything because their out-of-pocket costs are covered.
Below are common examples of costs based on insurance type:
|Type of Insurance
|Cost of myUCLAhealth Message
|Most patients will have no out-of-pocket expenses. The cost for some patients ranges from $3 to $6.
Patients with Medicare Advantage have a $20 co-payment (the cost of an in-person or video visit).
|No out-of-pocket costs.
|Some patients have copays comparable to those charged for in-person or video visits (usually $10 or $20). If a deductible applies, the full cost (often $75) is charged.
Contact your insurance provider to learn exactly how much you'll have to pay out-of-pocket for a medical advice message.
How do I send a message to my doctor through myUCLAhealth?
Log in to myUCLAhealth (MyChart) using a web browser or the MyChart app. Pick the provider you want to message from a list of your providers. You must be a current patient to message a provider.
Select “Contact my doctor’s office.” Type and send your message.
How long does it take to get a response to a myUCLAhealth message?
You can expect a response from your provider within 2 business days.
Do not use myUCLAhealth messages for urgent issues. If you need to contact your provider right away, please call the main number for his or her clinic. Call 911 or go to the nearest emergency department if you have a medical emergency.
myUCLAhealth is powered by MyChart® licensed from Epic Systems Corporation, © 1999 – 2024.
What should I do if I have a question about a charge?
First, read our billing and health insurance FAQs to see if your question is answered there.
Like other California hospitals, we send separate bills for hospital services and physician services. (For an explanation of which care falls under which service, see making sense of your UCLA Health medical bill.)
Since we bill separately, make sure to contact the appropriate service: