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Human Resources

Open Enrollment 2017

The Annual Benefits 2017 OPEN ENROLLMENT Period
is scheduled from May 11, 2017 - May 25, 2017.

This is your annual opportunity to review your current benefit elections, make changes to your medical, dental and life insurance coverage, as well as enroll (or re-enroll) in a health care or dependent child care Flexible Spending Account (FSA) for the new plan year.

As was true last year, Open Enrollment for Plan Year 2017-2018 will be completed online via an Electronic Open Enrollment Form. The form allows you to login, enroll and change your benefits online – at work, home or from any computer with Internet access – anytime during the Open Enrollment period.    Note: VPN access is NOT required.


You will have to complete enrollment via the Electronic Open Enrollment Form if you wish to make changes to your benefit elections and/or if you wish to re-enroll in the health care or dependent child care Flexible Spending Accounts for the new plan year. Upon successful completion of the form, you will receive an e-mail confirmation.

PLEASE NOTE: If you have no changes to make and do not wish to participate in the Flexible Spending Accounts, it is not necessary to complete the Electronic Open Enrollment Form – your benefits will continue as they are. However, please review the “Updates for 2017-2018” section below (including the General Reminders), as there are some plan modifications that take effect on July 1, 2017.

All changes made during this Open Enrollment period will become effective on July 1, 2017* and will remain in effect through June 30, 2018. You cannot change your benefit selections until the next Open Enrollment period, unless you experience a qualifying change in family status during the plan year.

*With the exception of voluntary life insurance changes for those currently on short-term disability, FMLA leave or unpaid personal leave. Such changes will become effective on the first of the month following the employee’s return to work.


You will need your Pace Portal username and password as well as all dependent data (Social Security Number, date of birth, etc.) in order to complete the Electronic Open Enrollment Form.

This is a SINGLE TRANSACTION system. **Once you make your elections and select FINALIZE, you will not be able to re-enter the system to make additional changes.**

If you exit the system without completing the process, your elections will be lost and you will have to begin again.

Updates For 2017-2018


No changes to the dental plan designs. 

Dental DHMO Plan – we are pleased to announce that the DHMO rate for 2017-2018 will remain unchanged. 

Dental DPPO Plan – the rate for the PPO will increase by 4.55%.

Dependent Coverage Update – currently, dependent children are eligible to remain on the dental plan until the end of the month in which they turn age 19. However, if the dependent is a full‐time student, coverage is extended to the end of the month in which he/she is no longer a full‐time student (prior to turning age 23) or, if full‐time student status is maintained, to the end of the month in which he/she turns age 23.

As of July 1, 2017, dependent coverage eligibility under the dental plans will mirror coverage under the medical/vision plan. A dependent will be covered under the dental plans until the end of the calendar year in which he/she turns age 26. The University Benefits office will no longer verify full-time student status for these dependents. When dependents age off the plan at age 26, they will be offered the opportunity to continue dental coverage on COBRA.

If you currently have a dependent who is under age 26 and continuing dental coverage on COBRA, you may add him/her to your dental coverage, during Open Enrollment, for an effective date of July 1st.

Reminder: Deductibles and annual limits are calculated on a calendar year basis, even though our plan is year is July-June. Please plan accordingly.

Per Paycheck Premiums (July 1 2017 – June 30, 2018)


No changes to the medical plan designs.

CIGNA Telehealth – As of July 1, 2017, CIGNA participants can see a board-certified doctor with private, online, and live appointments via a secure video or phone conversation. Participants are able to choose from two Telehealth vendors, American Well and MDLIVE, how they want to connect, and the time and day that works best for them with medical Telehealth services available 24/7/365. Telehealth doctors can treat many common health issues including cold & flu, joint aches and pains, fever, bronchitis and more. Participants with children can also turn to CIGNA Telehealth services for non-emergency pediatric care. Telehealth services provide a more immediate and potentially lower cost alternative to traditional ‘in person’ care, such as hospital ERs and Urgent Care clinics.

For more information on CIGNA Telehealth click here.

IRS Change in Health Savings Accounts (HSA):  The IRS has updated the following limit, effective January 1st of each respective year:


Coverage Type




HSA Contribution Limit









Please note: The Family deductible and out-of-pocket maximums are cumulative. There is no individual limit for employee plus one or family coverage.

Per Paycheck Premiums (July 1 2017 – June 30, 2018)


2017-2018 Health Care Flexible Spending Account Plan Year Maximum

Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs) allow you to set aside pre-tax dollars on a per-paycheck basis to save for expenses not covered under your medical plan.

The annual limit has increased to $2,600 (up from $2,550 in 2016-2017) for the July 1, 2017 through June 30, 2018 plan year.

You must enroll, during each Open Enrollment period, in order to participate for the new plan year.

Click here to access a list of Eligible Expense Items.

Reminder: Deductibles and annual limits are calculated on a calendar year basis, even though our plan is year is July-June. Please plan accordingly.

Per Paycheck Premiums

General Reminders:

Cigna’s Pre-Enrollment Hotline

If you are considering changing plans during Open Enrollment and have coverage-related questions, CIGNA’s pre-enrollment hotline number is 1-800-401-4041 (available 24/7 during the Open Enrollment period).

Mail Order Pharmacy Co-Payments – For Certain Maintenance Medications

One (1) copayment for a three (3) month supply of certain maintenance medications via CIGNA Home Delivery pharmacy. This benefit pertains to the maintenance medications on this list only. As the list may change from time to time, please log into your account, at, for the current list of covered medications.

CIGNA Lab Services

In most instances you should not experience any issues, as your physician automatically sends your lab work to the correct CIGNA-participating lab. However, if the in-network provider sends your lab work to a non-participating vendor, the claim will be processed at the out-of-network level or not covered at all (if you are enrolled in an in-network only plan). As such, we strongly recommend that you inform your provider of the participating labs whenever you utilize these services. The following provides some guidance on how to best handle these services.

What you need to do when lab work is needed:

  • Find network labs by going to or calling the number on your CIGNA ID card.
  • Tell your doctor you want to use a CIGNA network lab.
  • If your doctor takes a sample in the office, tell your doctor to send it to a CIGNA network lab.
  • Bring a print-out of participating labs to your appointment.
  • Make sure the lab is an in-network lab. Just because a lab accepts your CIGNA ID card, it doesn’t necessarily mean that the lab is contracted within the CIGNA Open Access Plus network.

If an in-network doctor does not send your lab work to a participating provider and your claim is processed at the out-of-network level (or not covered if you are in the In-Net $50 or Network Core Plan), you do have the right to appeal the decision. This can be done by contacting CIGNA’s customer service department at the number listed on your ID card.

Annual Deductibles, Out-Of-Pocket Maximums, Etc.

Annual deductibles, out-of-pocket maximums, etc. are based upon a calendar year.

Benefits to Consider During this Open Enrollment period:

Benefits to Consider Throughout the Plan Year (Can be Changed During the Year):

Need Help?

For assistance with your enrollment selections, please contact the University Benefits office, at 914-923-2828 (X22828), or via e-mail at or at