Open enrollment information coming soon

Open enrollment — the time of year when employees re-enroll in their current health plan or make changes to their benefit selections — is just a few weeks away. Next week, you’ll be mailed a postcard reminding you about your 2013 health insurance premium rate. (Your rate depends on whether you completed Medica’s My Health Rewards program.) During the week of Oct. 22, a packet of information detailing open enrollment benefit choices will be mailed to all employees’ homes. Open enrollment begins Oct. 29 and runs through Nov. 16.

No changes to health insurance options for 2013

Once again, you’ll be able to enroll in one of three Medica networks: Elect, Essential or the Choice, the same three options that were available during last year’s open enrollment. In addition, the annual deductible, co-insurance payment requirement, out-of-pocket maximum and prescription co-pays will remain the same in 2013.

The City’s HRA/VEBA contribution will also remain the same in 2013: $90 per month for single coverage or $190 per month for family coverage. The HRA/VEBA contribution is the same for all employees, no matter which network they select or whether or not they completed Medica’s My Health Rewards program.

All health insurance premiums will rise

As a result of rising medical care costs, health insurance premiums will increase. How much more you will pay depends on two factors:

  1. Which Medica network — Elect, Essential or Choice — you enroll in. (Elect and Essential have lower premiums than Medica Choice.)
  2. Whether you completed all elements of Medica’s My Health Rewards program by the Aug. 31 deadline. (Eighty-four percent of City employees completed this optional wellness incentive program and, as a result, qualify for the preferred premium in 2013. The preferred or wellness premium is lower than the standard premium rate that will be charged to employees who didn’t finish Medica’s My Health Rewards program.)

Flexible spending accounts do not roll over

During open enrollment, you can sign up for a payroll deduction that places part of each paycheck into a flexible spending account to pay for prescriptions, co-pays, eyeglasses or other eligible health care expenses with pre-tax dollars. Employees can also opt to create a flexible spending account to cover child care expenses. Because your previous year account elections don’t roll over to the coming year, you must elect to create a new flexible spending account each year.

All employees who have health insurance through the City have an HRA/VEBA (Health Reimbursement Arrangement/Voluntary Employee Beneficiary Association) account. Each month, the City deposits money into your HRA/VEBA account to help you cover out-of-pocket health care expenses.

In 2013, the City will be using a new contractor to administer flexible spending accounts, HRA/VEBA accounts and pre-tax transportation plans. In past years, these accounts were administered by OptumHealth Financial Services. Next year, they will be administered by WageWorks.

 

Published Oct. 10, 2012