• Employee benefits annual enrollment closes Nov. 18; three informational sessions remain

    The 2010 UST Annual Enrollment for benefits began Nov. 2 and will end Wednesday, Nov. 18. This is the only time of the year when employees can change their insurance coverage without having a “qualifying event.” Those eligible employees who have not completed their annual enrollment should do so immediately.

    This year’s annual enrollment is important for hourly employees as they are eligible to participate in the Employee Purchase Leave Time program (EPLT).  Information can be found in your annual enrollment packet or online here. This program allows hourly employees to purchase additional time off in calendar year 2010 beyond their normal leave time (PLT) accrual. 

    Changes in coverage made during the annual enrollment period become effective Thursday, Jan. 1, 2010. Participants must remain enrolled in their selected health-care option until the following year. 

    Medical Insurance

    UST is self-insured, which means the university acts as its own insurance company, paying all claims and bearing the risk of the plan. Blue Cross of Minnesota administers UST’s medical plan.

    Medical premiums for the 2010 plan year were initially projected to increase by 12.3 percent over the 2009 rates. This increase did not take into account the projected $340,000 deficit in plan cost for 2009. Together with the Fringe Benefits Advisory Committee (FBAC), Human Resources Department staff made several plan design changes in order to more closely align the health-care plan with those of other Twin Cities employers. By making several modest plan changes, we were able to reduce the premium increase from 12.3 percent to 7.5 percent for 2010. 

    Unlike previous years in which employees and UST shared all premium cost increases equally, St. Thomas will absorb a larger percentage in 2010 — that is 10 percent for UST and 3.2 percent for employees.

    Changes to the medical plan include:

    Pharmacy Co-Pays

    • Co-pays for generic drugs will continue to be covered at $15 or less.
    • Co-pays for brand name drugs on the formulary list will increase to $35.
    • Co-pays for brand name drugs not listed on the formulary list will increase to $60.

    Annual Deductibles

    • Gold Plan – Deductible for Employee only coverage will increase to $300. 
      • Deductible for Employee+1 & Employee + Family coverage will increase to                          $600.
    • Silver Plan – Deductible for Employee only coverage will increase to $600.
      • Deductible for Employee+1 & Employee + Family coverage will increase to   $1,200.
    • Bronze Plan – Deductible for Employee only coverage will increase to $1,200. 
      • Deductible for Employee + 1 and Employee + Family coverage will increase           to $2,400.
    • HDHP Plan – Deductible for Employee only coverage will increase to $2,400. 
      • Deductible for Employee+1 & Employee + Family coverage will increase to   $4,800.

    Platinum Plan Co-Pay Changes

    • Physician Office visit co-pays will increase to $35.
    • Emergency Room visit co-pays will increase to $100.

    Dental Plan Changes

    • There will be no increase to premiums in the dental plan. 

    Vision Plan Changes

    • There will be no increase to premiums in the three vision plan options.

    Information Sessions

    For employees interested in learning more about the UST benefits program are invited to attend one of the following employee meetings:

    General Annual Enrollment Information Sessions Remaining

    • Monday, Nov. 9 — 8-9 a.m., St. Paul, MHC 155
    • Wednesday, Nov. 11 — noon-1 p.m., Minneapolis, TMH 301
    • Monday, Nov. 16 — noon-1 p.m., St. Paul, MHC 154

    Health Savings Account (HSA) Info Session

    • Thursday, Nov 12 — noon-1 p.m., St. Paul, JRC 126

    You are required to complete the online enrollment process if:

    • You wish to participate in health care reimbursement, dependent care reimbursement or health savings accounts for 2010.
    • You wish to change your medical plan option or level of coverage.
    • You wish to change your dental plan level of coverage.
    • You wish to waive coverage for medical or dental coverage in 2010.
    • You wish to add, delete, change plan option or change plan coverage for vision insurance.
    • You previously waived medical and/or dental coverage and you wish to enroll in 2010.
    • You need to add or delete a spouse or dependent.

    For more information contact the Benefits Office, Human Resources Department, at (651) 962-6497 or by e-mail at jame7033@stthomas.edu.

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