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Inside Iowa State, a newspaper for faculty and staff, is published by the Office of University Relations.

Nov. 3, 2006

For faculty, P&S, supervisory merit

Open benefits enrollment starts now. See story.

Merit employee enrollment ends Nov. 13

by Samantha Beres

Merit staff will be interested in two pieces of news during the current enrollment period.

The state has added a new plan to the Wellmark Blue Cross Blue Shield choices called Blue Access. It's an open network plan in which users can self-refer to participating providers. The big draw of the plan, said human resources specialist Jane Walter, is that the plan is free for families.

Due to a merger, those currently enrolled in John Deere plans will next year be under United Health Care (UHC) unless they choose to enroll in other available plans. Those currently under John Deere Primary Care Select will be transferred to UHC Heritage Select and will continue to pay no premium. Those under John Deere Open Access Choice family plan will transition to UHC Choice and there will be a decrease in the monthly cost from $206.40 to $55.02. For those already under UHC Choice, there will be a $13.02 per month increase in cost.

Premiums for merit singles under all medical insurance plans will continue to be covered by the university. Except for new merit staff, there is no option to sign up for or change dental coverage.

Merit staff must fill out forms for any changes; there is no online option. Staff may stop by for forms between 8 a.m and 5 p.m. at 3770 Beardshear. For those who wish to discuss benefits plans, appointments are encouraged and can be made by calling 4-7680.

For all employees

During open enrollment periods, faculty, merit, P&S and supervisory merit employees may enroll in, make changes or end their flex spending accounts. Without a request for change, the amount of deduction currently elected will continue into 2007.

Employees also may apply for supplemental and dependent life insurance and disability insurance. This must be done in person at 3770 Beardshear.

For additional information, call 4-7680 or e-mail The ISU Plan Open Change Guide is available online at