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Nov. 3, 2011 Volume 33, No. 11

Time crunch on to make health and benefits choices


Health insurance enrollment deadline Nov. 4

Annual enrollments for 2012 changes in faculty and staff health benefits are Friday, Nov. 4, for active employees and Nov. 11 for retirees. Employees wanting to make changes must actively do so in myHR before those dates or they will automatically default into plans.

Changes in employee health insurance plans will take effect Jan. 1, 2012. After the change, employee medical contributions will have increased on average by 8 percent due to increased usage and rising health care costs. 

Using the myBenefitDecision Center tools in myHR, employees can estimate out-of-pocket costs for each plan. The tools ask questions regarding family doctor and specialist visits, prescriptions and more. Health insurance enrollment decisions must also be made in myHR.

The current Catastrophic plan will be eliminated and replaced with the myOptions Health plan. Similar to the Catastrophic plan, the myOptions Health plan has lower employee paycheck contributions, but the annual deductibles are significantly higher. MyOptions plan does, however, add the option of a Health Savings Account to help ease deductible expenses for the member. 

The current Choice plan will be renamed the myChoice Health plan for 2012, and it will add a deductible for in-network care; the current plan has none. The deductible will be $250 per person and $750 per family. If one chooses the myChoice plan, he or she also has the choice of a Health Reimbursement Account and/or a Health Flexible Account.

One similarity in the myChoice and myOptions plans is that preventative care is covered 100 percent by both. A full list of preventative care coverage can be found at

There will be no change in dental, vision, long-term disability or life insurance premiums in 2012.

Any employee in the Catastrophic plan this year must actively select a new plan next year or they will automatically default into the myOptions plan. Choice subscribers who do not actively enroll will remain in the myChoice plan.

For more information regarding health insurance changes, go to