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Healthcare Plan Changes Upcoming

August 21, 2012

Union stewards Jim Owen, Sandy Thompson, Sue Stephens, Jan West, and Karen Pelone, and 121RN Union Representative Judith Serlin, met with hospital management to learn more about the new healthcare plan.  In September, the hospital will hold workshops on the new plan so that employees can select which healthcare plan works best for their family in terms of cost and coverage.

Providence has changed the healthcare benefit package including premiums, deductibles and out-of-pocket maximum and out-of-pocket limits.  There are three plans, two of which are PPO plans and one of which is an HMO. The network provider is still Blue Shield. Eligibility requirements have decreased so that if you work 20 or more hours per week, you are defined as part-time and 30-plus hours a week is considered full-time. Our Union is studying the information provided and how plans will impact our membership.

To determine which plan best meets your family’s needs, review the plans themselves. Key to each plan are associated tax incentives. These accounts include the Flexible Spending Account (FSA), and then a program called a Health Reimbursement Account and another called a Health Savings Account.  On the Providence Tarzana website, in an effort to help you determine which plan may work best for you, the hospital asks for your tax rate. This is for your information only and will help you learn more about the different plans.

Preventive care – There is no copay or deductible as long as you see an in-network provider.  The hospital is using the federal government’s definitions of preventive care.

Spousal benefits – If your spouse has a comparable plan, he or she will need to pay an additional charge each month. We have asked questions about what the hospital considers a “comparable” plan.

The dental and vision plans will also change and our Union is also monitoring these changes.

Our Union has made a lengthy information request and, as we learn more about the plans, we will share them with you.  Our Union is concerned about the change in plans and premiums and has filed a grievance to protect our rights.

The hospital will offer wellness incentives of $700 (or $1,400 with spouse) for enrollees in the PPO plan or $400 ($400 with spouse) for the HMO plan. To receive this incentive, the hospital is again offering biometric screening for employees and their families and asking that employees select a primary care doctor. HealthyRoads is the company Providence has selected to run its wellness program.  Providence has stated that HealthyRoads will not share the information it receives with Providence.

If you have questions prior to the September forums: