Dear Academic Health Center Student Health Benefit Plan member,
The Academic Health Center Student Health Benefit Plan (AHC-SHBP) was originally established to provide enhanced benefits and broader eligibility criteria to meet the unique needs of students in the Academic Health Center. The modifications made to the Student Health Benefit Plan (SHBP) to add these requested benefits resulted in a more comprehensive plan at a higher cost to AHC students.
Today, both the AHC-SHBP and SHBP have increased their benefits to comply with the Affordable Care Act (ACA). As a result, beginning fall semester 2014, the University of Minnesota will no longer offer the AHC-SHBP. The University is instead offering the SHBP—which gives you comparable benefits at a lower cost.
What does this mean for me?
Eligibility criteria, prescription benefit access and drug formulary, dental coverage, and cost of the plans are key areas of difference between the AHC-SHBP and the SHBP.
You do not need to take any action—you will be automatically enrolled in the SHBP as long as you meet the eligibility requirements. To be eligible, you must be 1) admitted to a degree program; and 2) registered for six or more credits per semester that count toward the automatic assessment of the Student Services Fee.
What does the SHBP offer?
The SHBP meets and exceeds the standards set under the 2010 Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act for student health plans and is nationally recognized as the most comprehensive and cost-effective student plan available. For 2014, the SHBP will cost $1,050 per semester—adding up to an annual savings of more than $1,000 over the current AHC-SHBP cost. Key features of the SHBP include:
- No deductible;
- Access to the Blue Cross and Blue Shield worldwide network;
- 80% coverage of eligible expenses;
- Emergency travel assistance through FrontierMEDEX.
Where can I fill my prescriptions?
To save premium costs for students, the prescription benefit is administered through the Boynton Health Service (BHS) Pharmacy. Twin Cities students enrolled in the SHBP will have prescription benefits available at the BHS Pharmacy only. Please visit our website to review the current SHBP formulary.
Is there dental coverage?
The SHBP does not include dental coverage. However, if you meet the SHBP eligibility requirements, you are eligible to enroll in the Voluntary Student Dental Plan (VSDP) which also includes restorative dental benefits. Students who enroll in both the SHBP and VSDP will pay less per semester than the current cost of the AHC-SHBP.
What are the options for graduating students or students no longer eligible for coverage?
If you are an AHC-SHBP member who is graduating or you do not meet the eligibility requirements for the SHBP, you may enroll in the University of Minnesota Continuation Options. You have the choice of three Blue Cross and Blue Shield individual plans for guaranteed coverage without having to prove insurability. Costs are based on the deductible and network chosen. More information on Continuation Options can be found here. The deadline to enroll in Continuation Options is October 24, 2014.
Where can I get more information?
We understand—changes in health care coverage can be challenging and confusing. If you have questions, we encourage you to contact the Office of Student Health Benefits. Please watch your email and our website for additional details about both the SHBP and VSDP.
We look forward to serving you!
Director of Student Health Benefits
Office of Student Health Benefits
University of Minnesota
410 Church Street S.E., N323
Minneapolis, MN 55455
Phone: 612-624-0627 or 1-800-232-9017
Fax: 612-626-5183 or 1-800-624-9881