Open Enrollment Ends Nov. 22

A variety of options for faculty and staff are offered in health, wellness and other plans for 2017

Open Enrollment, the period when faculty and staff members have an opportunity to review their health plans and make choices regarding their 2017 benefits, will end Tuesday, Nov. 22.

“There’s a lot of good news this year,” said Dwaine Duckett, UC vice president of human resources. “We’ve worked hard to manage costs, and offer the protection of disability insurance to more faculty and staff than ever before. I encourage everyone to take a careful look at their options this year, to make sure they’re taking full advantage of their UC benefits.”

Medical Plans

Employees will see small increases, or even decreases in their contributions toward medical premiums this year. Over 90 percent of employees will see increases under $10 per month, and no increases are over $12 per month. For members of UC Care, monthly contributions will decrease.

Dental and vision plans are still offered at no cost for employees.

For 2017, a number of administrators will be changing for UC’s PPO plans. Anthem Blue Cross replaces Blue Shield as the administrator of medical benefits for UC’s PPO plans. Health Equity will continue as the health savings account custodian.

Anthem Blue Cross replaces Optum as the administrator of behavioral health benefits for UC Care and UC Health Savings Plan. Anthem replaces Blue Shield as the administrator of behavioral health benefits for Core, UC High Option Supplement to Medicare and UC Medicare PPO.

OptumRX replaced Blue Shield as the administrator of prescription drug benefits for UC’s PPO plans.

Disability Insurance

During this year’s Open Enrollment period, all benefits eligible employees may enroll in Voluntary Disability Insurance, which provides partial wages replacement when an employee is unable to work due to pregnancy, illness or injury. Also, during Open Enrollment, no eligible employee can be denied Voluntary Disability Insurance due to an existing medical condition. Those enrolling later will have to submit statements of health, and may not qualify for coverage.

Legal Plan

The ARAG Legal Plan is open for enrollment. Among the expanded benefits offered are identity theft protection and a new tax-planning package.

Workshops and Presentations

Throughout the Open Enrollment period, presentations and workshops hosted by UCSB’s Office of Human Resources are providing information and assistance to employees. Following are the remaining workshops.

A side-by-side comparisons of all UC medical plans will take place from 12:05 to 1:30 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 17, in the Human Resources Learning Center, SAASB 3101.

Faculty and staff members who have questions about health and welfare benefits or need assistance making changes are invited to drop by a Help Desk with Computer Lab, which will be available from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Friday, Nov. 18, in the Human Resources Learning Center, SAASB 3101.

Disability insurance workshops will take place at noon Tuesday, Nov. 15, and Friday, Nov. 18, in the UCen Flying A RoomA faculty session aimed at academic appointees eligible for academic paid medical leave will take place Wednesday, Nov. 16, at 2:30 p.m.

Those unable to attend either the general or faculty sessions can find information about disability benefits at

Additional information about Open Enrollment can be found here.

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