Campus News

Board of Regents approves USG health care plans, premiums

The Board of Regents approved the 2023 University System of Georgia health care plans and premiums for active employees and pre-65-year-old retirees at its Aug. 9 meeting. The board also approved the USG funding for the Health Reimbursement Account (HRA) for retirees aged 65 and older.

The USG announced that there will be no employee premium increases for 2023. The system continues to experience higher health care plan costs due to COVID-19 treatment, testing and vaccines, as well as increasing utilization of the plan benefits, inflationary pressures and impacts of new legislation. To manage overall plan costs, there will be plan design changes in all USG health care plans. In addition, UGA will contribute additional funds in the employer-paid portion of the premiums to prevent employee premiums from increasing.

While employee premiums will not increase for 2023, there will be an increase in the plan surcharges. Plan design changes include deductible, out-of-pocket maximums and/or copay increases. Some specific changes of note are:

  • Impacted wisdom teeth coverage will be removed from all health care plans and added instead to the USG dental plan.
  • Diagnostic breast exams coverage at 100% has been added to all health care plans.
  • Tobacco use and working spouse monthly surcharges will increase from $100 to $150.

There will be one surcharge for all dependent children 18 and older who use tobacco. Faculty and staff must complete the certification of their tobacco use and working spouse (if applicable) each year during Open Enrollment. Taking no action during Open Enrollment will result in a default to the surcharge. Faculty and staff are encouraged to review their Open Enrollment confirmation statement to make sure certification is completed. Corrections can be made through the end of the year through OneUSG Connect – Benefits at 844-587-4236.

The Tobacco Cessation option will continue to be available during Open Enrollment for employees and dependents who are tobacco users to provide an opportunity to take a Tobacco Cessation program, complete the program and have the tobacco surcharge removed. Information about Tobacco Cessation options is available on the USG Well-being website under Tobacco and Smoke-Free.

The Working Spouse Surcharge will apply to faculty and staff who cover their working spouse under the USG plan when the spouse has an offer of coverage from their own employer.

Faculty and staff may change or update their surcharge status at any time during the year through OneUSG Connect – Benefits. The change will be effective on the first day of the following month.

A summary of the approved plan design changes, including increases in deductibles, out-of-pocket maximums and/or copays, as well as the plan premiums are available on the USG benefits website.

USG will continue to offer a variety of resources for faculty, staff and retirees, as they have in years past, such as:

  • Faculty and staff can earn up to $200 in well-being credit for 2023. This year marks the rollout of a new, points-based system with additional earning activities. The new program year begins Oct. 1, 2022. To register, visit
  • Diabetes management, prevention and weight management programs continue at no cost. Programs are provided for health care-enrolled members who meet program criteria. Information is available on the well-being website.
  • Faculty and staff should continue to use Accolade to consult on all health care needs. Accolade features customized support and recommendations for employees enrolled in the Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield of GA plans.
  • Retiree 65+ contribution to the HRA will remain at $2,736.

Open Enrollment for the 2023 calendar year will be Oct. 24 through Nov. 4, 2022. Active employees will begin receiving Open Enrollment information in late September by mail. Their 2023 enrollment elections and certifications should be completed through OneUSG Connect – Benefits no later than Nov. 4, 2022. This is also a great time to review and update personal and emergency contact information, voluntary demographic data, W-2 consent and banking information in OneUSG Connect.

USG will host two “Better Together” benefits fairs this year. Faculty and staff may attend the in-person or virtual benefits fair for more information about the USG benefits programs.

  • The USG virtual benefits fair with live presentations and chat will be offered throughout the Open Enrollment period, from Oct. 24 through Nov. 4. All faculty, staff and retirees are encouraged to attend a fair to learn about the changes to the benefit plans for 2023. Registration emails will be distributed in October for the virtual benefits fair.
  • The in-person benefits fair will be held Oct. 17 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Georgia Center for Continuing Education’s Mahler Hall.

Pre-65 retirees and pre-65 dependents will remain on the same plans as active employees. As in the past, there will be separate pre-65 retiree premium rate charts for the 2023 plan year.

Medicare-eligible retirees aged 65 and over and Medicare-eligible dependents aged 65 and older will continue to enroll in their supplemental health care coverage through the Retiree Health Exchange. Medicare Part A and B will provide primary coverage. USG will also continue to provide an annual contribution into a HRA for retirees and/or dependents to use toward premiums and other eligible out-of-pocket health care expenses. The Board of Regents approved the USG HRA funding to remain at $2,736 per year for each Medicare-eligible retiree aged 65 and older and any Medicare-eligible covered dependent(s) aged 65 and older. These are the same levels as 2022. To receive the 2023 USG HRA funding, the retiree and/or dependent must purchase coverage through the Alight Retiree Health Solution. The Medicare enrollment period is Oct. 15 through Dec. 7, 2022, for a Jan. 1, 2023, coverage start date.

University Human Resources is ready and available to offer guidance on all 2023 Open Enrollment questions. Questions about these health plan benefits can be directed to or 706-542-2222.