Stephen F. Austin State University

Benefits News

Benefits News

New website and call center open for information about HealthSelect transition [published: May 31, 2017]

As you may be aware, Blue Cross and Blue Shield (BCBSTX) of Texas will become the new plan administrator for HealthSelectSM of Texas and Consumer Directed HealthSelectSM beginning September 1, 2017. You can now find general information and answers to questions you and your employees may have about the transition at A BCBSTX Personal Health Assistant can answer questions and provide information, by phone or live chat. For live chat, scroll to the bottom of the Personal Health Assistants page. To speak with a Personal Health Assistant, call (800) 252-8039 toll-free, Monday - Friday 7 a.m. - 7 p.m. CT or Saturday 7 a.m. - 3 p.m. CT.

For detailed answers to questions your employees may have about the transition, go to the
HealthSelect transition page on the ERS website.

Getting Prepared for Benefits Summer Enrollment [published: May 22, 2017]

The Benefits Summer Enrollment timeline has changed. This year, SFA employees can make benefit election changes between the dates of July 9-22. Note that this is a 2-week window to make election changes. This is shorter than we have had in the past. Please save these dates to your calendar so you can make changes if you choose. Changes made during summer enrollment will go into effect September 1, 2017.

ERS will start mailing personal benefits enrollment statements on June 12th. Please confirm your permanent address is correct to ensure you receive your benefits statement.

Human Resources will continue providing updates when additional Summer Enrollment information becomes available.

Click here for more information.

Important information about your TexFlex plan administrator [published: May 9, 2017]

Earlier this Plan Year, WageWorks, Inc. finalized the acquisition of ADP, LLC's Spending Account business. This includes the administration of the TexFlex Flexible Spending Accounts and Commuter Spending Accounts. ERS has been working with WageWorks and ADP to ensure a smooth transition for TexFlex participants.

In the coming weeks, you'll begin to see WageWorks branding on communications, documentation, forms and websites. However there will be no changes in how you access your spending account information, submit claims and card substantiations or contact customer service. You will also continue to use your same TexFlex Debit Card.

ERS and WageWorks will keep you informed as changes arise. If you have additional questions, please contact TexFlex Customer Care at 1-844-884-2364.

Update - It's still HealthSelectSM of Texas, but BCBSTX will be the new plan administrator [published: May 5, 2017]

What will the change mean for you?

If you are enrolled in HealthSelectSM of Texas or Consumer Directed HealthSelectSM, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Texas (BCBSTX) will replace UnitedHealthcare as your health plan administrator on September 1, 2017. If you are enrolled in an HMO this change will not affect you.

Through August 31, 2017, you should continue to use your UnitedHealthcare ID card and call the current UnitedHealthcare Customer Service line at (866) 336-9371 (TTY: 711) for information about your coverage or individual claims information.

BCBSTX will not have access to individual claims information until September 1, 2017.

In the months leading up to the transition, BCBSTX will send letters and make telephone calls to participants who may be affected by certain changes. For example, if your primary care provider (PCP) or specialist will longer be in the HealthSelect network, you will be notified in June.

New website and customer care center

Beginning May 23, you will be able to visit the BCBSTX HealthSelect website or call a Personal Health Assistant toll-free at (800) 252-8039, Monday - Friday 7 a.m. - 7 p.m. CT or Saturday 9 a.m. - 3 p.m. CT.

You can:

  • Get general information about HealthSelect of Texas and Consumer Directed HealthSelect plan benefits.
  • Use the Provider Search Tool to find out if your current PCP or other providers will be in the BCBSTX HealthSelect network after September 1.
  • Get help finding a network PCP or specialist if your current provider will no longer be in the network.
  • Nominate a provider to be added to the HealthSelect network.

Continued care for certain conditions

If you are pregnant and in your second or third trimester, or if you are receiving care for a chronic illness or an acute medical condition, you may be able to continue to receive health care services from your current provider after September 1, 2017, for a certain period, even if the provider will no longer be in the network. You will need to fill out and submit to BCBSTX a Transition of Care form. For more information, call a BCBSTX Personal Health Assistant toll-free at (800) 252-8039.

Prescription drug coverage

OptumRx will continue to be the pharmacy benefits manager for prescription drug coverage for HealthSelect of Texas and Consumer Directed HealthSelect.

ID cards

BCBSTX will send you a new medical ID card and OptumRx will send you a new ID card for prescription drug coverage before September 1.

Programs available under BCBSTX

Real Appeal, an online weight loss program, will continue to be available to eligible HealthSelect participants as of September 1, 2017. Naturally Slim, a different online weight loss program, will also be an option for eligible participants.

Virtual Visits will also continue to be a HealthSelect benefit after September 1, 2017. Virtual Visits allows you to consult with a licensed physician in real time from a computer, tablet or smart phone using secure online audio and video technology. Beginning September 1, there will no longer be a copay for HealthSelect of Texas participants if you use a network Virtual Visits provider. The current $10 per-visit copay for this benefit will continue through August 31.

Over the next few months, you can find information and updates by visiting the HealthSelect transition page on the ERS website.

Electronic tax Form 1095-C for offer of health insurance now available [published: February 16, 2017]

The 2016 electronic 1095-Cs are now available. The 1095-C is the Employer Provided Health Insurance Offer and Coverage form that is required by the IRS. Paper Form 1095-Cs will be mailed out by February 28, 2017.

To view your electronic 1095-C:

  • Login to mySFA
  • Click Employee Tab
  • Click "View 1095-C Health Insurance Offer Statement" under Pay & Tax
  • Select Tax Year 2016
  • Click Display

What is a Form 1095-C?

Form 1095-C, Employer-Provided Health Insurance Offer and Coverage Insurance, provides you with information about the health coverage offered by your employer. In some cases, it may also provide information about whether you enrolled in this coverage.

How do I use the information on my Form 1095-C?
If you enrolled in a health plan through the Marketplace, the information in Part II of Form 1095-C could help determine if you're eligible for the premium tax credit. If you did not enroll in a health plan through the Marketplace, this information is not relevant to you.

You are not required to file a tax return solely because you received a Form 1095-C if you are otherwise not required to file a tax return.

Should I attach Form 1095-C to my tax return?
No. Although you may use the information on the forms to help complete your tax return, these forms should not be attached to your return or sent to the IRS. The issuers of the forms are required to send the information to the IRS separately. You should keep the forms for your records with your other important tax documents.

Health plans sending tax Form 1095-B for medical coverage [published: February 16, 2017]

All current and former employees and retirees who had medical coverage through the Texas Employees Group Benefits Program (GBP) in Calendar Year 2016 will receive Form 1095-B by end of February 2017. Medical coverage providers are required to mail Form 1095-B to members.

If any employee who had GBP medical coverage in 2016 and doesn't receive a Form 1095-B by the end of February,
please call your medical plan directly (i.e. UnitedHealthcare). Receiving Form 1095-B does not mean you owe income taxes on the value of the health care benefits you receive.

United Healthcare for HealthSelectSM of Texas: (866) 336-9371 (TTY 711), 8 a.m. - 7 p.m., Monday - Friday, 7 a.m. - 3 p.m. Saturday, or download a copy of your Form 1095-B from your account (coverage documents).

About Form 1095-B

Under the Affordable Care Act, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) requires employers to report medical coverage provided to employees and their dependents in the previous tax year. Every employee, retiree and former employee of a state agency, higher education institution and other agency who had medical coverage through the GBP in Calendar Year 2016 will receive a Form 1095-B from his or her medical coverage provider. Employees who have opted out or waived GBP medical coverage won't receive a Form 1095-B.

Employees will use information from Form 1095-B for tax filing purposes.

HealthSelect transition to BlueCross and BlueShield of Texas [published: January 25, 2017]

On September 1, 2017, BlueCross and BlueShield of Texas (BCBSTX) will become the plan administrator for HealthSelectSM of Texas and Consumer Directed HealthSelectSM. Here are answers to some questions your employees may have:

Why is ERS making this change?

Under state law, ERS is required to periodically rebid the contract for the HealthSelect third-party administrator (TPA). Rebidding the contract helps ERS determine that health plan participants and the State of Texas are getting the best possible value and service.

The current HealthSelect TPA contract was awarded in 2012 to UnitedHealthcare (UHC). BlueCross and BlueShield of Texas (BCBSTX) previously served as the ERS plan administrator.

When will this change take effect?

BCBSTX will become the new plan administrator on September 1, 2017. UnitedHealthcare will continue to be the HealthSelect TPA until August 31, 2017.

Will my rates change?

The change in plan administrators does not directly affect contribution rates or out-of-pocket costs like copays and coinsurance. ERS manages the contract and is responsible for setting rates, eligibility and enrollment for all the health plans in the Texas Employees Group Benefits Program. ERS also establishes the plan design, including setting copays, coinsurance and deductibles.

Contribution rates could change when the new plan year starts on September 1, 2017. If they do, it will be because of rising health costs and other factors - not the new third-party administrator.

Where can I find out if my doctors are in the BlueCross and BlueShield of Texas network?

An online provider search tool will be available before Summer Enrollment. You may also contact BlueCross BlueShield directly this summer for more information.

What if my doctor isn't in the BlueCross and BlueShield of Texas network? Will I still be able to see him or her?

Yes, you can see a non-network provider. However, if you see a non-network provider, you will pay higher out-of-pocket costs, including a deductible. It costs much less to see a network provider.

Throughout the spring and summer leading up to the transition, we will provide regular updates about the transition. This information will also be posted on the ERS website.

Retirement Contribution Rate Change [published: August 18, 2016]

In continuing the phased-in increase of TRS contribution rates, TRS active member rates will increase from the current 7.2% to 7.7% in fiscal year 2017. These new rates are effective September 1, 2016 and will be reflected on your October 1st paycheck. These increases are a continued implementation of Senate Bill 1458 passed during the 83rd Texas legislative session (2013). Contribution rates for ORP participants will not change this year.

There's a new health plan coming - Consumer Directed HealthSelect [published: May 31, 2016]

State of Texas employees and retirees not eligible for Medicare soon will have a new health plan option: Consumer Directed HealthSelect. UnitedHealthcare will administer the high-deductible health plan. Optum Bank, a subsidiary of United HealthCare Services, Inc., will administer the health savings account (HSA) program. More information will be coming as we get closer to Summer Enrollment.

Consumer Directed HealthSelectSM is a high-deductible health plan, which means you could pay much more in out-of-pocket costs for health services and prescriptions. The member is responsible for paying an annual in-network deductible of $2,100 for an individual or $4,200 for a family (member plus at least one family member) for covered health services and/or prescriptions before the plan begins to pay for anything except for preventive services. Preventive services, like annual check-ups or vaccinations, are covered at 100%. The member would have to pay the full cost of other services and prescriptions until the deductible is met, and it's important to understand what the full costs are, especially for prescriptions. After the deductible is met, the health plan pays 80% of covered, in-network services and prescriptions.

With the Consumer Directed HealthSelectSM, you have access to the same large, national provider network as in the HealthSelect of Texas plan, including tens of thousands of providers across Texas. You don't have to stay in the network - you can use any doctor, clinic, hospital or health care facility you want - but you'll save money when you use network providers. And you don't have to choose a primary care physician or get referrals to specialists. Consumer Directed HealthSelect is not available to people who are eligible for Medicare.

More information will be available during Summer Enrollment to help you decide if Consumer Directed HealthSelect is right for you and your family.