The 2012 Benefits Breakdown

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This year’s open enrollment period will run from Oct. 24 to Nov. 18. Read on to find out what benefits will be changing in 2012 and what will remain the same. Employees can find additional information using the following resources:

  • 2012 Benefits Guide. These will be mailed to employees’ homes this week.
  • Onsite Meetings. The benefits team is hosting numerous meetings across campus to educate employees about upcoming changes.
  • Benefits Fair. The fair will be held on Wednesday, Nov. 2, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Student Center Ballroom (look for an article on the fair in the Oct. 31 issue of The Whistle.)
  • Send an Email. Contact a member of the benefits team here.  

What’s Changing 

Board of Regents-Approved Changes for all University System of Georgia Employees:

  • Frozen HMO Plans. The Kaiser HMO and the BlueChoice HMO plans are closed to new enrollees in 2012. Those currently enrolled may continue to participate in the plans.
  • Elimination of the BOR PPO Plans. The Board of Regents (BOR) PPO and BOR Health Savings Account (HSA) PPO medical plans will be discontinued. Employees enrolled in these plans will automatically be enrolled in the Open Access POS plan (known as the BOR PPO Alternative plan) or the HSA Open Access POS plan (known as the BOR HSA Alternative plan), respectively.
  • Rx Out-of-Pocket Maximums (Open Access POS Plan Only/Medco). The existing quarterly out-of-pocket maximums will be replaced with an annual out-of-pocket maximum. The new annual maximum is lower than the yearly combined maximums, so employees potentially save money on future prescriptions.
  • Employee Eligibility for Medical Plans. Employees must work a minimum of 30 hours per week (currently 20) and/or an average of 75 percent time over the course of a year to be eligible for benefits. Employees who do not meet the new eligibility requirements will continue to be eligible for vacation/sick accruals and participation in the retirement plans.
  • Medical Coverage Premiums. All medical premiums will increase. Refer to the rate sheet in the back of the 2012 benefits guide (mailed to homes) or online.
  • HSA Match. The HSA that works in conjunction with the HSA Open Access POS plan will be matched, dollar for dollar, on a monthly basis, up to an annual maximum of $375 for single coverage and $750 for family coverage. 

Georgia Tech-Approved Changes for Tech Employees:

  • New Voluntary Vision Plan. The existing vision plan offered through United Health Care (UHC) will be replaced with a new and improved plan through EyeMed. If you’re currently enrolled in the vision plan through UHC, you will automatically be enrolled in the new plan through EyeMed. Advantages of the new plan include a larger provider network, greater allowances for lenses and frames and a $1,000 benefit for laser vision correction.
  • Bank at Work Program. This program provides employees with unique discounts at Bank of America, Georgia United Credit Union, State Bank & Trust and Wells Fargo. Each bank offers discounts on a variety of banking services including free checking, discounted mortgage loan services and free safety deposit boxes. 

What’s Not Changing

  • Dental Plans. Providers, plan design and premiums will remain the same. The BOR Metlife dental plan is open to new enrollees.
  • Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs). FSAs allow you to use pre-tax money to pay for your qualifying out-of-pocket health and dependent care expenses. Employees may contribute up to $5,000 to a dependent care FSA. Employees who do not participate in high deductible HSA medical plans may also contribute up to $5,000 to health care FSAs.
  • Basic Life and Accidental Death and Dismemberment (AD&D) Insurance. Eligible employees will continue to be automatically provided with $25,000 of basic term and AD&D insurance.
  • Supplemental Life and Accidental Death and Dismemberment (AD&D). Employees may elect supplemental employee and dependent life and AD&D insurance or opt to increase existing coverage levels for an additional cost.
  • Voluntary Short- and Long-Term Disability Plans. Both short-term and long-term disability options will remain the same.
  • Long-Term Care. To enroll and/or obtain additional information, visit (username: gatech; password: mybenefit) or call 888-354-6498.
  • Critical Illness. You may enroll in critical illness or opt to increase existing coverage levels for an additional cost by contacting UNUM, the plan administrator, at 866-441-6973.
  • Whole Life. Coverage information and rates can be obtained by contacting UNUM at 866-441-6973.  

Medical PlanFAQs

With the eligibility requirements for benefits changing, will employees currently working 20 to 29 hours be grandfathered in?
No employees will be grandfathered in. Employees affected by this change will be contacted by a member of the benefits team to discuss resources for seeking alternative individual coverage options.

If I do not meet the new eligibility requirements, does that mean that I lose all of my benefits?
No, the employee will still accrue vacation and sick time and can participate in all retirement plans.

If I’m enrolled in an HMO, can I add an eligible dependent during open enrollment?
Yes, as long as the employee is currently enrolled in one of the HMOs.  

What is the impact of moving from the Blue Choice PPO to the Open Access POS?
Open Access is a slightly smaller network; however, the benefits team is expecting minimal provider disruption with this change. Also, the network discounts associated with the Open Access network are greater than those in the Blue Choice network, so employee out-of-pocket expenses will be lower with this change.  

If I want to change my current medical plan, which plans can I choose from for 2012?
You may enroll in the Open Access POS or HSA Open Access POS plan.



  • Workflow Status: Published
  • Created By: Amelia Pavlik
  • Created: 10/17/2011
  • Modified By: Fletcher Moore
  • Modified: 10/07/2016

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