Healthcare Update


WHO: All Graduate Assistants at Michigan State University

WHAT: Your health insurance provider will no longer be Aetna Student Health. Your new health insurance provider will be Blue Care Network, also known as BCN.

WHEN: August 15th, 2016

WHY: According to recent interpretations of the Affordable Care Act, the health plan offered to Graduate Assistants must be an employer group plan, not an individual plan. The health plan with Aetna Student Health is considered an individual plan. Aetna does not currently have an employer-group plan available for student coverage. To comply with current law, MSU will change our health plan to an employer-group plan covered under Blue Care Network.

So HOW is my healthcare changing? The Graduate Employees Union bargained to include health benefit language that clearly spells out details of our health plan during the last contract negotiations. The benefits outlined in Article 21 of the GEU-MSU contract will not change. Please scroll down to review your health coverage.


Things to plan on:?

  • Olin will continue to serve as your primary care physician under this plan. ?
  • As with every new plan year, you will need to get a NEW referral to see any existing or future specialist. ?
  • To check to see if your current specialist(s) are covered under the new healthcare plan, Blue Care Network, please visit From there, under “choose health plan,” select Employer Group Plans, then click Blue Care Network (HMO). Once you have selected this option, you will be able to type in your physician’s name and location.

    Please e-mail with any individual questions.


I. Health Insurance

A. Health Insurance shall continue at the current level of benefits, with the following changes to be effective August 15, 2015:

1. Employees may be seen by any physician at Olin Health Center by appointment.

2. The per-illness or per-injury cap shall be unlimited.

3. Coverage for Medical Charges shall be 95% for Preferred Care Providers and 80% for Nonpreferred Care Providers.

4. Covered Preventative Services shall include one annual gynecological exam (including laboratory costs) and mammography when recommended, with no age limit.

5. One of the three physician office visits at Olin Health Center subsidized by MSU may be a general physical exam.

6. Preferred Care Physician’s office visits, including mental health care benefits, shall include: a. Unlimited visits per year; b. The Employee will be responsible for a $15 co-pay per visit after satisfying the annual deductible; c. There is no lifetime maximum benefit for mental healthcare coverage.

7. The annual cap on prescription drug coverage shall be unlimited.

8. The annual deductible for Preferred Care Providers shall be $125 for an individual and $250 for a family.

9. The out-of-pocket maximum for individuals shall be $1,500 for Preferred Care Providers and $2,300 for Non-preferred Care Providers.

10. There will be no exclusions for pre-existing conditions.

11. The Employer will notify Employees when they leave the bargaining unit of options for continuing healthcare coverage.

B. Prescription drug coverage shall continue at the current level of benefits:

1. Prescription Co-Pays shall be $7.50 for generic drugs and $15 for brand-name drugs.

2. The prescription drug benefit will include contraceptives, with no co-pay for generics.

C. Spouse/OEI/Dependent Health Coverage:

The Health Care plan offered shall include an MSU premium contribution toward health care coverage for spouses/dependents and other eligible individuals (OEI) beginning August 15, 2015 as outlined below. For each academic year, Employees enrolling only a spouse or OEI (not covered by his/her Employer’s health plan*) or child, MSU will contribute a total of $2,500 toward the cost of covering spouse, OEI or child, or a total of $2,200 toward the cost of covering a spouse or OEI and dependent(s), or multiple dependents, up to a maximum of 70% of the total premium cost. Employees are responsible for any remaining premium costs for dependents after the application of the dependent subsidy. *Spouses or OEIs employed by an employer other than MSU must enroll for their employer’s health plan if the annual premium cost to the spouse is $850 or less.