Campus News

Benefits open enrollment now underway

Benefits open enrollment will be held Nov. 4-22 for eligible employees. During open enrollment, all benefits-eligible employees must:

• Indicate their tobacco use in the UGA MyBenefits@UGA system, which is at Benefits-eligible employees also must indicate the tobacco use of any health insurance-covered dependents older than 18. Those who fail to do so will have a $50 surcharge deducted from their paycheck. Even those who have indicated their tobacco use in the past must do it again during this open enrollment period. Benefits-eligible employees who do not want to make any changes in their benefits coverage for 2014 still must indicate their tobacco usage in the UGA MyBenefits@UGA system.

• Make any desired benefit changes for 2014, including adding, changing or removing benefit plans, adding or removing dependent coverage, or enrolling in flexible spending accounts. (Employees must enroll each year to participate in the FSA program). To do so, benefits-eligible employees must use the UGA MyBenefits@UGA system. If no changes are made, benefits-eligible employees will be enrolled in plans comparable to their 2013 coverage.

Highlights and changes

Employees still will have the same four health care options for 2014, though some features of the plans have changed. The plans available are: HSA Open Access POS, Open Access POS, BlueChoice HMO and Kaiser Permanente HMO.

There will be no increase in premiums for the HSA Open Access POS, Open Access POS or BlueChoice HMO plans. The Kaiser Permanente HMO premium will increase approximately 4.4 percent.

HSA Open Access POS participants will pay 15 percent coinsurance-up from 10 percent-for in-network care after they meet the deductible. There will be a separate out-of-network deductible for 2014.

Employees using the Open Access POS plan will see three changes: office visit and emergency room copays will count toward the annual out-of-pocket maximum; the emergency room copay will increase from $50 to $150; and out-of-network deductibles and maximums will increase.

For those using the BlueChoice HMO or the Kaiser Permanente HMO, the primary care physician office visit copay will increase to $20, up from $15.

In 2014, mail-order prescription drug option will be available on all offered health care plans. Employees will be able to choose to pick up their medication(s) at the pharmacy or save a trip and have a 30- or 90-day supply mailed to them.

The University System of Georgia Health Plan meets the affordability requirement under the Affordable Care Act. Therefore, generally, USG employees will not be eligible for a tax credit in 2014 through the health insurance marketplace created under the Affordable Care Act.

New voluntary benefits

Effective January 2014, U.S. Bank will provide the Health Savings Account and Flexible Spending Accounts for those employees who choose to use those voluntary benefits.

Employees who elect to contribute to a 2014 FSA or enroll in-or currently are enrolled in-the HSA Open Access POS plan will receive a U.S. Bank welcome kit. For employees who currently have a HealthHub/PayFlex HSA, their 2014 contributions automatically will be sent to their new U.S. Bank HSAs.

For 2014, the USG will pay the monthly HSA account fees, and UGA will pay the monthly account fees for the FSAs.

Delta Dental will offer two plan options in 2014, a new base option as well as a high option that features a higher annual maximum benefit than the base plan and also includes coverage for child and adult orthodontia. The high option is comparable to the current UGA dental plan. Premiums and details will be on

For 2014, EyeMed will provide vision coverage to all USG institutions. Its provider network includes retail chains such as LensCrafters, Sears Optical, Target Optical, JCPenney Optical and many Pearle Vision locations. Most employees will have access to local, in-network providers.

Employee options for voluntary short-term disability and long-term disability will be available through MetLife.

Minnesota Life will provide basic and supplemental life insurance options for employees and their dependents. Because of the transition to Minnesota Life, all employees are encouraged to indicate their life insurance beneficiaries in the MyBenefits@UGA system during open enrollment. Stand-alone supplemental accidental death and dismemberment insurance will be available in increments of $10,000 up to $500,000 for employee-only or family coverage.

Details and enrollment instructions can be found at the UGA open enrollment website,, or in the MyBenefits@UGA Open Enrollment Guide.

Human Resources is offering information sessions for benefits open enrollment. No registration is necessary. Remaining sessions for a general audience will be held Nov. 4 at  9-11 a.m. in Masters Hall of the Georgia Center and Nov. 5 at 9-11 a.m. and 2-4 p.m. at the Chapel.

Employees also can sign up for text message updates during open enrollment by texting USG to 23613. Terms and conditions are at USG and UGA will be sending out emails as well to help keep employees informed before, during and after open enrollment.

Questions about benefits or open enrollment can be answered by going to the HR website at, calling HR at 706-542-2222 or emailing