As you are aware, each year we face new challenges when renewing our health insurance programs. To help us understand and anticipate market trends, particularly relating to cost, and to help us make the best decisions with the options available to us, this year we created a Benefits Committee to work as an advisory group. The charter of this group was to explore offerings that best address employees’ needs. This group represents categories of employees including faculty & staff, exempt & non-exempt, single & dependent coverage, and those in different cycles of their lives. The committee began the discussions in May and met regularly throughout the summer. Our brokers, Kistler Tiffany Benefits (KTB), led discussions to educate the group on market options available to us that were affordable yet retained a high level of quality for our employees.
Ursinus is retaining United Healthcare as its health insurance carrier in 2019. This ensures that our employees will still be able to use their current plan doctors. To help us manage the cost of rising healthcare, we also are adding a Health Reimbursement Account (HRA) along with the Health Savings Account (HSA).
Employees will see no increase in premiums. The plan remains the same (i.e. high deductible and copays after the deductible); however, the administration of the plan will be slightly different. The deductible will increase from $1500 to $3000 for the single employee and from $3000 to $6000 for dependent coverage. However, this increase in deductible will be paid by the college through the HRA and will not be a cost to the employee. Since the deductible will now be higher, ($3,000 for single and $6,000 for family), employees will not pay the copays that occur after the deductible is satisfied until the new higher number is reached, which may result in savings to our employees.
The Benefits Committee supported the decision to move to this type of plan but also advised us that some employees struggle to find additional dollars to contribute to the HSA as a means of helping them work through the annual deductible. We made it a priority during our review to look for ways the college could support these concerns. As a result, we will increase the college contribution to the HSA from $300 per year to $350 per year.
Unlike in past years, this year we are requiring all full-time employees to log onto the ADP system to make benefits choices for 2019 during the open enrollment period. If you do not log into the system, your current enrollment(s) will end and will not carry forward to the new plan year. You will also need to log into the system if you wish to contribute to your Health Savings Account (HSA) or a Flexible Spending Account (FSA) for health care or dependent care. Please keep in mind that benefits are an important part of your total compensation package, so you will need to login, enroll, review and confirm you choices for 2019.
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Medical Plan Summaries