Nicole and her husband, Gerard, own two small businesses in Kearney.

Their family has always enjoyed great health. For years, they successfully used catastrophic Affordable Care Act (ACA) plans, which have low premiums and high deductibles, from various insurers for their family’s health coverage.

But when she got a breast cancer diagnosis in October 2022, her old health plan wasn’t delivering.

Claims processing and payments were slow, so tens of thousands of dollars in bills lingered on the kitchen counter. There were questions about coverage, but customer service wasn’t providing helpful answers. The situation caused stress and frustration atop the worry and struggle of fighting cancer.

That fall, Nicole worked with her longtime insurance agent to find a better coverage option. He steered her to Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Nebraska’s (BCBSNE) ACA plan, Nebraska HeartlandBlue, ensuring access to the care she needed from trusted local doctors.

She points to the personal relationship she developed with Lisa, a BCBSNE nurse who helped maintain her health during treatments and answer questions about navigating the medical system.

“Just knowing that she was touching base every couple of weeks gave me a level of comfort and security, because I knew there was someone there for me,” recalls Nicole.

Today, Nicole is happily cancer-free and planning an exciting family vacation.

“When people ask me what we do for health insurance…I tell them we have Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Nebraska, and it worked out really well for us,” Nicole says.

BCBSNE is proud to be the insurance partner Nebraskans can count on when the stakes are high. Click below to watch a playlist of videos telling Nicole’s story.