July 2, 1999
Volume XXXII No. 26


Annual enrollment brings changes to benefit plans

Employees participating in this year's annual Open Enrollment Period through July 30 can expect a variety of changes in the Health Science Center's health, dental and life insurance benefit plans, including additional options and various benefit carrier changes.

The employee Open Enrollment Period is the designated time period for employees to make changes to their benefit plans, including adding coverage for dependents or switching to a different insurance plan. The enrollment period began July 1 and continues four weeks.

Employees may need to fill out the Evidence of Insurability form, which is required if an employee wants to add a dependent to his or her current coverage or make other changes. The deadline for completing Evidence of Insurability forms has been extended to July 31.

Highlights of Open Enrollment include the addition of two new point of service health plans, changes in the Delta dental plan, modifications to prescription drug co-payment fees and new life insurance coverage options.

Due to the increasing cost of health care and prescription drugs, new options have been added to The University of Texas System benefits packages.
Employees have the option of choosing between four medical plans and three dental plans.

This year the system has added both the United HealthCare Point of Service plan and the Texas Universities Health Plan Point of Service. Employees can continue to get coverage through U. T. Select/CIGNA or Prudential HMO, which were offered last year as well. The two new point of service plans provide both HMO benefits and out-of-network benefits. Employees are able to select the type of benefits they want each time they seek services.

With Prudential HMO, employees must designate a primary care physician who coordinates all medical care and makes necessary referrals to HMO network specialists. There is no deductible with this plan or out-of-pocket maximum--just the $10 co-pay each office visit.

The U. T. Select/CIGNA plan allows for self-referrals to in-network doctors, specialists or hospitals. There is no primary care physician to coordinate referrals. Employees fill out their own claim forms and there is a $250 per person deductible, with 85 percent paid on most benefits after the deductible is met. There is a $1,500 per person out-of-pocket maximum. Out-of-network and out-of-area deductibles are higher.

The system also has made changes to the PCS prescription drug program this year, affecting the cost of co-payments for generic and brand name prescriptions. Employees enrolled in the prescription drug program will pay a $10 co-pay for generic drugs and a $20 co-pay for brand name items. Employees who are Prudential members are required to use the Prudential Prescription Drug Program. Effective Sept. 1, the PCS prescription card will no longer be accepted for Prudential customers.

The Health Science Center's dental plan also has changes this year. Employees have the option of choosing a Delta Prevent or Delta Standard benefit plan, as well as the United Dental HMO, which requires a primary family dentist and referrals for specialty dental care.

The Delta Prevent plan is the coverage that employees will automatically receive if they make no changes to their plan during Open Enrollment. Delta Prevent is a basic dental plan that provides 100 percent coverage for preventive services provided by an in-network dentist, including oral exams, cleanings and x-rays. Any other services are not covered.

Delta Standard provides varying amounts of coverage for services, including diagnostic, preventive, oral surgery and restorative work.

Life insurance benefits will now feature $10,000 basic life and $10,000 personal accident for employees at no cost. There also are lower premiums offered for the Voluntary Term Life coverage and the new Group Universal Life Coverage.

For more information regarding the benefit plan changes, employees will have an opportunity to attend a health benefit fair on July 14 and 15 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the auditorium foyer.

Employees also have the ability to make changes to their benefit plans during the Open Enrollment Period through the U. T. Touch system using a touch-tone phone or personal computer. Personal identification numbers (PIN) for employees to use with the U. T. Touch System are being mailed to the employees' home addresses.

Additional information, including provider directories, will be disseminated as it becomes available. For more information on benefit changes, call the Human Resources benefits section at ext. 2610 or send e-mail to <Casanova@uthscsa.edu>. E-mails and phone calls are preferred during the Open Enrollment process.

insurance





Check your list twice during Open Enrollment

The annual Open Enrollment Period for insurance benefits at the Health Science Center runs through July 30. This year, there are many changes and additions in the insurance packages.

The following checklist has been provided to help you through the process of evaluating and changing your benefit plans. Most of the information is from "Explore the Options! Annual Enrollment 1999-2000," the new benefits guide for employees and retirees of The University of Texas System.

In an effort to provide employees with as much information as possible, a special benefits fair will be held from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. July 14 and 15 in the auditorium foyer. Benefit plan representatives will be attend the fair, as well as staff from Human Resources, to help you with questions you may have.

Here are some tips for determining what actions you should consider:

  • Review your coverage/option letter: Each employee will be mailed a coverage/option letter, which will provide a personal identification number (PIN) for making Open Enrollment selections on the U.T. Touch system. This letter will show your current coverage, "default" coverage should you not make any selections during Open Enrollment, and other available plans. Keep the coverage/option letter because it will be required during Open Enrollment.

  • Review current medical coverage and determine if you want to change your coverage or add dependents. The plans are U.T. Select, United HealthCare Point of Service, Texas Universities Health Plan Point of Service and Prudential HMO.

  • Review current dental coverage as the Delta Dental benefits have changed. United Dental HMO benefits will remain the same, but be sure to explore all your dental options.

  • Review current life insurance coverage because the carrier and benefits have changed.

  • Review current personal accident coverage because the carrier and benefits have changed.

  • Review current long-term disability coverage.

  • Determine your U.T. FLEX allocations, which must be renewed each Open Enrollment period.

  • Determine the dependent coverage you would like to select.

Once you have made your selections, use the U.T. Touch phone system or U.T. Touch Online to make changes. Shortly after you do so, you will receive a confirmation statement in the mail.

Review this statement carefully; if you wish to make changes to your selections, you may do so as many times as you wish before the enrollment period is completed July 30.

Employees based at the Health Science Center may watch The News for coming details on changes in the parking rate structures that will take effect with the opening of the new parking garages. While rates will necessarily increase in order to pay for the structures, innovative changes are planned in the assignment of parking spaces. In addition, for the first time the Health Science Center will provide the option of payroll deduction for your parking fees.




Of Note

Physical Plant name changed

The Physical Plant Department has changed its name to Facilities Management. Darrell Maatsch has replaced Tommy Atkins, who retired in January, as director.


HSC Web-based models sought

The Division of Educational Research and Development is seeking examples of Web-based instruction developed by Health Science Center faculty. They will be used as models during a July conference. Instruction models are needed from the biomedical sciences, dentistry, medicine and the allied health sciences.

Resources submitted will be used during WBI Showcase, an all-day Web-based instruction conference on campus July 22. The purpose of WBI Showcase is to provide a forum to discuss issues related to Web-based instruction resources, cost, student response and education purpose.

Faculty interested in participating may call Elaine Demps at ext. 2814 or e-mail her at <Demps@uthscsa.edu>.


Mac Users Group meets July 7

The Macintosh Users Group, Tex-MUG, will hold its next meeting on Wednesday, July 7, at 11:45 a.m. in Room 2C of the library. Andrew McIntosh of Campus Technology Solutions will introduce "Sherlock," Apple's information search tool.


Pet Clinic closed July 12-30

The Health Science Center's private pet clinic will be closed July 12-30.

Supplies may still be purchased.


Bible study group to meet

A Bible study group is meeting every Wednesday from 12:15 to 1 p.m. in the University Hospital cafeteria third-floor Optimist Room. For more information, contact Yolanda Zahorik at ext. 3805.


Picnic volunteers needed

Health Science Center picnic organizers are looking for volunteers for the July 8 event. The picnic will be held from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. in the courtyard between the Medical School and the auditorium. For information on volunteering, contact Mary Yanes at ext. 2205.




Information for Open Enrollment to be sent

As the annual Open Enrollment Period begins, employees can expect to receive the following information:

  • Employee coverage/option letters and a personal identification number (PIN) will be mailed to employees' home addresses this week.

  • An informational booklet, a personalized benefits statement, Evidence of Insurability guide, and a rate sheet outlining out-of-pocket fees for employee benefits in the San Antonio area will be mailed to employees' homes before the July 14 and July 15 benefits fair.

  • A third packet of information, including directories for each benefits provider, will be sent to employees through campus mail before the benefits fair.

  • The Evidence of Insurability deadline has been extended through July 30.




Book published

textbook



Dr. Ian Thompson, urology, recently had his book Surgery of the Prostate
published by Churchill Livingstone Inc. Dr. Thompson
collaborated on the surgical skills book with
Dr. Martin Resnick. The instructional text has an
accompanying CD-ROM with video footage of surgery techniques.




Calendar for July 5 - 11

MONDAY, JULY 5
Independence Day holiday (Skeleton crew day)

TUESDAY, JULY 6
8:00 a.m.

Rehab Medicine PM&R Conf. "Pre-and Post-Operative Care by Physical Medicine," Drs. Norman Gall & T.R. Christian Reutter (UH: Reeves Rehab Center 3rd-floor classroom)
8:00 a.m.
Medical Housestaff Specialty Conf. "Emergency Series: Meningitis," Dr. Gavin Corcoran (LEC: 3.104A)
11:00 a.m.
TNT "Blood Banking: Nucleic Acid Amplification Testing," Dr. Louis Katz, Quad Cities Regional Virology Center, Davenport, Iowa (call ext. 2700 for more information)
12:30 p.m.
TNT "Clinical Chemistry & Toxicology: Toxicology of Ethylene Glycol & Other Glycols," Thomasine Newby,
Bio-Rad Laboratories, Tyler (call ext. 2700 for more information)
4:00 p.m.
Cardiovascular Pathobiology Research Conf. "Mitogenic Signaling of Arginine Vasopressin (AVP) in Mesangial Cell Growth," Dr. Paramita Ghosh (MED: 331.5B)

WEDNESDAY, JULY 7
7:00 a.m.

Vascular Surgery Grand Rounds, Dr. Mellick Sykes (LEC: 2.042)
8:00 a.m.
Medical Grand Rounds "The Top Ten of 1997-1998," Dr. Valerie Lawrence (MED: 409L)
9:00 a.m.
Surgery Trauma M&M Conf., Dr. Ronald Stewart (MED: 309L)
11:00 a.m.
TNT "Microbiology: Parasitology Update: Blood Pathogens," Susan Roman, Georgia State University, Atlanta
(call ext. 2700 for more information)

THURSDAY, JULY 8
7:30 a.m.

Thoracic Surgery Resident Teaching Conf. (UH: 5th-floor neonatal ICU classroom)
8:00 a.m.
Neurology Grand Rounds "aPL Update," Dr. Robin Brey (MED: 444B)
11:00 a.m.
TNT "Radiology: Professionalism & Ethics," Ginger Griffin, Baptist/St. Vincent's Health System, Jacksonville, Fla. (call ext. 2700 for more information)
Noon
Pulmonary, Thoracic & Oncology Conf. (MED: 209L)
4:00 p.m.
Surgery Tumor Conference, Dr. Anatolio Cruz (MED: 209L)
4:30 p.m.
Thoracic Grand Rounds Conf. "Case Presentations," Dr. Allan Brants (MED: 309L)

FRIDAY, JULY 9
7:30 a.m.

Pediatric Grand Rounds "Enteroviruses: New Advances in Diagnosis & Therapy," Dr. Charles Leach (MED: 409L)
8:00 a.m.
Rehab Medicine Lecture "CAD/CAM Manufacture of Prosthesis," William Rogers (UH: Reeves Rehab Center 3rd-floor classroom)
8:00 a.m.
Medical Housestaff Specialty Conf. "Emergency Series: Respiratory Failure," Dr. Antonio Anzueto (MED: 409L)
8:30 a.m.
Cardiovascular Research Conf. "Neutrophil Dysfunction in Diabetes," Dr. Linda McManus (MED: 3.078V)
10:00 a.m.
TNT "Health Care Chaplains: Dynamics of the Pastoral Visit in the Hospital," Dr. Jesus Rodriguez, AIDS Pastoral Care Network, Chicago, Ill. (call ext. 2700 for more information)

SATURDAY, JULY 10
9:00 a.m.

General Surgery Grand Rounds, Dr. Wayne Schwesinger (MED: 409L)


Index of issues



THE NEWS is published Fridays by the Office of Public Affairs for faculty and staff of The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio.
Vice President for University Relations.....Judy Petty Wolf
Executive Director of Development & Public Affairs.....Dr. Charles Rodriguez
Editor.....Will Sansom
Writers.....Myong Covert, Catherine Duncan, Heather Feldman, Jennifer Lorenzo
Photographers.....Jeff Anderson, Lee Bennack, Lester Rosebrock
Designer.....Kris Doyle
Web Editor.....Joanne Shaw
Production.....Printing Services


Office of Public Affairs, 7703 Floyd Curl Drive, San Antonio, Texas 78284-7768
(210) 567-2570