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Coverage Decisions and Appeals

Coverage Decisions and Appeals

The process for coverage decisions and making appeals deals with problems related to your benefits and coverage for medical services and prescription drugs, including problems related to payment. This is the process you use for issues such as whether something is covered or the way in which something is covered.

Asking for a coverage decision
A coverage decision is a decision we make about your benefits and coverage or about the amount we will pay for your medical services or drugs. For example, your network doctor makes a (favorable) coverage decision for you whenever you receive medical care from him or her or if your network doctor refers you to a medical specialist. You can also contact us and ask for a coverage decision if your doctor is unsure whether we will cover a particular medical service or refuses to provide medical care you think you need. In other words, if you want to know if we will cover a medical service before you receive it, you can ask us to make a coverage decision for you.

We are making a coverage decision for you whenever we decide what is covered for you and how much we pay. In some cases we might decide a service or drug is not covered or is no longer covered by Medicare for you. If you disagree with this coverage decision, you can make an appeal.

Making an appeal
If we make a coverage decision and you are not satisfied with this decision, you can “appeal” the decision. An appeal is a formal way of asking us to review and change a coverage decision we have made. When you make an appeal, we review the coverage decision we have made to check to see if we were following all of the rules properly. Your appeal is handled by different reviewers than those who made the original decision. When we complete the review, we give you our decision.

You, an independent organization that is not connected with our plan (State Health Insurance Assistance Program), a doctor or other prescriber, someone else to act on your behalf, or your lawyer may ask us for a coverage decision or appeal a decision. If you want someone other than yourself to be your representative, you need to complete the Appointment of Representative form that gives that person permission to act on your behalf. You must give us a copy of the signed form.

Appointment of Representative Form (English  Spanish)

When to ask for a Coverage Decision for Medical Services (Part C)
Ask for a medical coverage decision if any of the following situations apply to you: 

  1. You are not getting certain medical care you want and you believe that this care is covered by our plan.
  2. Our plan will not approve the medical care your doctor or other medical provider wants to give you, and you believe that this care is covered by the plan.
  3. You have received medical care or services that you believe should be covered by the plan, but we have said we will not pay for this care.
  4. You have received and paid for medical care or services that you believe should be covered by the plan, and you want to ask our plan to reimburse you for this care.
  5. You are being told that coverage for certain medical care you have been getting that we previously approved will be reduced or stopped, and you believe that reducing or stopping this care could harm your health.

You can ask for a decision about Part C (medical care) coverage one of the following ways:

  • Call: 1-800-960-2530 (TTY 1-877-247-6272) Monday - Friday, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.
  • Fax: 1-813-262-2802
  • Write: WellCare, Coverage Determinations -Medical, P.O. Box 31370, Tampa, FL 33631

How to make an appeal
To start your appeal, you, your doctor or your representative must contact our plan. If you are asking for a standard appeal, make your appeal by submitting a written request. If you are asking for a fast appeal, you may make your appeal in writing or you may call us. You must make your appeal request within 60 calendar days from the date on the written notice we sent to tell you of our answer to your request for a coverage decision. If you miss this deadline and have a good reason for missing it, we may give you more time to make your appeal.

If your health requires it, ask for a fast appeal. If we are using the fast deadlines, we must give you our answer within 72 hours after we receive your appeal. We will give you our answer sooner if your health requires it. If we are using the standard deadlines, we must give you our answer within 7 calendar days after we receive your appeal. We will give you our decision sooner if you have not received the drug yet and your health condition requires us to do so. If you believe your health requires it, you should ask for a fast appeal.

There are three ways to file an appeal for a Part C Determination:

  • Call:  1-800-960-2530 (TTY 1-877-247-6272) Monday - Friday, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.
  • Fax: 1-866-201-0657
  • Write: WellCare, Appeals Department, P.O. Box 31368, Tampa, FL 33631-3368
    • Overnight Address: WellCare, Appeals Department, 8735 Henderson Road, Ren. 4, Tampa, FL 33634
You may download the following form to use on your appeal:

Independent Review Organizations; also known as Independent Review Entity (IRE)

If our plan says no to your appeal, you can choose whether to accept this decision or continue making another appeal. If you decide to go on to a Level 2 appeal, the Independent Review Organization reviews the decision our plan made when we said no to your first appeal. This organization decides whether the decision we made should be changed. The Independent Review Organization is an independent organization that is hired by Medicare.


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Y0070_WCM_42183E Last Updated On: 10/1/2019