Lifetime Benefit Solutions does have the correct rates for those enrolled in the 2018 PPO plans and the "PPO Blue" language will be updated before your next billing cycle.
2018 Retiree Plan Information
- Non-Medicare eligible retirees will move to Aetna and CVS in 2018 for the PPO Plan and the PPO Savings Plan
- Medicare-eligible retirees will REMAIN COVERED under the Highmark Freedom Blue PPO for 2018
Below are electronic copies of the letters being mailed to retiree homes the week of October 23, 2017. Please click on the letter that is applicable to your retiree status.
Highmark will be issuing new identification cards to all members enrolled in Freedom Blue PPO. Please know there is no change to your information. Only the look of the back of the card is different. New identification cards will be mailed in mid-December and can be used beginning January 1, 2018.
As additional 2018 information becomes available, the below chart will be updated. If you have a need to access 2017 plan year information, please see the chart further below containing all 2017 details.
|Resources for All Retirees|
|University Health Services Pharmacy|
|2018 Rates||Retiree Summary Plan Document|
|Dental & Vision Options for Retirees with PARSE||FAQs|
|Non-Medicare Eligible Summary of Benefits|
|2018 PPO Plan Summary of Benefits||2018 PPO Savings Plan Summary of Benefits|
|Becoming Medicare Eligible Resources||Freedom Blue Resources|
|Freedom Blue Informational Packet||Freedom Blue Website|
|Freedom Blue Application||2018 Highmark Freedom Blue Network Sharing|
|2018 Freedom Blue Summary of Benefits||2018 Freedom Blue Annual Notice of Change|
Retiring and Over Age 65-Creditable Prescription Coverage
If you are over the age of 65, you may receive a letter from the Department of Health and Human Services stating “it appears you did not have prescription drug coverage that met Medicare’s minimum standards.” The letter goes on to indicate you may be subject to a late enrollment penalty.
If you receive this letter, please complete the form and send it back to Highmark. They will adjust their records accordingly to ensure they reflect your creditable coverage during the time you were enrolled in a Penn State sponsored medical plan. If you have any questions or concerns, please HR Services at AskHR@psu.edu.
Retiree Request for Change Form
If you wish to refuse medical coverage, you must complete the Retiree Request for Change Form. Retirees who refuse coverage will not be able to re-enroll at a later date.
If your eligible dependent loses coverage and needs to enroll in the Penn State Retiree Medical Benefits as your dependent, please complete the Retiree Request for Change Form. If your dependent is also Medicare eligible, they will also need to complete a Freedom Blue application and provide a copy of their Medicare card outlining the Part A and Part B effective dates.
Retiree Billing Process
We have contracted with Lifetime Benefit Solutions to administer, bill, and collect the health care premiums from all of our retirees who have the Penn State medical benefit.
- Welcome Letter
- Frequently Asked Questions - Retiree Billing Administrator
Important Notes for Retiree Billing Process
- ACH forms need to be completed with Lifetime Benefit Solutions.
- ACH withdrawals will now be taken monthly.
- Penn State ID’s can be used instead of SSN for Member Portal and ACH-just call Lifetime Benefit Solutions (800) 828-0078.
Retiree Davis Vision Discount Program
Retirees can take advantage of a FREE vision discount program available through Davis Vision. Enjoy discounts on eyeglasses, accessories, and examinations. Simply present the card at a participating Davis Vision provider.
Davis Vision discount pricing is available to anyone enrolled in a Highmark medical plan. See our guide for how to access the Davis Vision Member Portal.
Retiree ID Card
In accordance with HR102, all retirees will be required to surrender their active Faculty/Staff id+ card to their department supervisor. Retirees who meet the years of service requirement are eligible to obtain a new Retiree id+ card after their official retirement date. For more information, please visit Penn State id+ website.
Zostavax/Shingles Vaccine For Medicare-eligible Freedom Blue PPO members:
This vaccine is covered under the Part D drug benefit. You will pay the $20 prescription copay if you receive the vaccine at a pharmacy that provides them. A great resource for you is the pharmacy at Wegman’s, who has stores across the state of Pennsylvania, for your convenience. To find a Wegman’s pharmacy near you, please use the "Find your store" feature on the Wegman's website.
If you have questions regarding coverage of the Zostavax/Shingles vaccine, please call Highmark’s Freedom Blue PPO customer service at (866) 918-5285.
IRS Forms for 2017
Form 1095 for the Affordable Care Act is often called the “W-2 of benefits”.
Updated December 2016: On November 30, 2016, the IRS extended the due date for the 2016 form 1095-C reporting requirements. This means that the original deadline for issuing form 1095-C to employees has moved from January 31, 2017 to March 2, 2017. You will receive your 2016 form 1095-C prior to the revised deadline of March 2, 2017.
You will only receive this form if you are a benefit-eligible employee with the University. These forms are similar to your W-2 and while not required to file your 2016 tax return, they will be required when filing your taxes with the IRS in future years. The 1095-C will be mailed to your home address from Equifax, Penn State’s partner in 1095 form administration.
Important Past Updates
For the Medicare-eligible retirees in the FreedomBlue PPO, effective March 1, 2013, ALL Geisinger physicians and hospitals will be out-of-network providers, as described within. The out-of-network benefit for the FreedomBlue PPO has a maximum out-of-pocket of $750 per person, per year.