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Key Changes in 2018

Below are the key changes happening in 2018 for employees and retirees. Review each change to help you make the most informed decisions during Open Enrollment.

Access to My Benefits Portal

This summer, My Benefits, your gateway to review and change your benefits was upgraded to offer increased security, improved navigation and an optimized user experience. As a result, you will want to note these changes to portal access:

  • Employees: You will access My Benefits using your SUNet ID and you will be taken directly to the portal home page. When you log in to the new portal for the first time only, you will be asked to agree to a Terms of Service. After that, you will be taken to the portal home. To view your current elections for the first time, click "My Profile" at the top of the left menu. To upload documentation, click "Change Your Benefits." 
  • Retirees and Inactive Employees: Your access to the upgraded portal is still under construction as a more secure login method is being developed. You will be notified as soon as retiree access is available. In the meantime, and during Open Enrollment, please contact the University HR Service Team to view or make changes to your benefits. 

​Here's a summary of some of the new features you will see in the portal:

  • Mobile Access: The upgraded portal is optimized for viewing and changing your benefits on the go. Simply log in to the My Benefits portal from your mobile phone or tablet and follow the menu options to make changes or view your current benefits.
  • Spanish Content: The portal will now feature translated content, such as instructions, descriptions and messages.
  • ​Dependent Verification Process Simplified: When you add a dependent to your benefits, that election is incomplete until the required certification documents are received. While you have 31 days to submit the appropriate information, ensure that your dependents are covered by uploading the required dependent documentation using the “upload documents” feature, located under "Change Your Benefits." The upgraded portal will display the most current status of your dependent in the system.

Increased Health Savings Account Limits

If you enroll in the Blue Shield Healthcare + Savings plan or the Blue Shield ACA Basic High Deductible plan, you're eligible to enroll in a Health Savings Account (HSA). In 2018, employees and retirees under 65 can contribute more to their HSA. The new limit is increasing by $50 to $3,450 for individual-only HSAs and the contribution for family coverage will increase by $150 to $6,900.

Increased Healthcare Flexible Spending Account Limit

In 2018, you can contribute up to $2,600 of pre-tax dollars to your Health Care FSA. During Open Enrollment, you can elect to have Stanford withhold an annual amount which will be deducted in equal amounts from your pay on a pre-tax basis for reimbursement of eligible healthcare expenses. You must re-elect an FSA each year.

Retirees: Discontinuation of United Healthcare Plans

United Healthcare informed us in the spring that they will no longer support retiree drug subsidy plans. These plans are the type where prescription drugs are received through the medical plan instead of enrolling in Medicare Part D. Stanford offers prescription drug coverage in its medical plans and does not require retirees to enroll in Medicare Part D. As a result, the United Healthcare Medicare Advantage and Senior Supplement Plans are being discontinued as of 2018. Members of these two plans will receive more information about this change in the mail and will have the option to enroll in a different plan or will be defaulted to the Blue Shield Retiree PPO if a new plan is not elected.

2018 Medicare Compatible Plan Options
Medicare Advantage Plans
  • Kaiser Permanente Senior Advantage
  • Health Net Seniority Plus
Medicare Supplement Plans
  • Blue Shield Retiree PPO
  • Health Net Medicare COB
  • Verify that your preferred providers and prescriptions are included in the plan that you select. 
  • Review the Summary of Benefits and Coverage (SBC) for the new plan you select.
  • Expect to receive a new ID card for 2018. 

Reduced Co-Pays for Certain Therapies

The co-payments for physical therapy, occupational, and speech therapy have been decreased from $75 to $40 for the Stanford Health Care Alliance (SHCA) and EPO plans since these services typically require multiple visits.

Third Cleaning Added for Orthodontia

In 2018, we will cover a third cleaning for participants in the Delta Dental Enhanced Plan who are undergoing orthodontic treatment. In addition, preventative services will now be covered at 100% if you use a Delta Dental provider within our network. You should confirm provider network status with Delta Dental beforehand.