July 2006

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Philodemic Room

Attendees:  Robert Robinson, William McElroy, Elliott Crooke, Mary Anne Mahin, Eileen Fenrich, Jo Ann Moran Cruz, Maggie Little, Gene Ford, Dick Bates, Melivinia Towns, Susan Buckingham, Vivian Murphy, Spiros Dimolitsas, Charles DeSantis, Clint Brooks, Rachel Bridges


The meeting was called to order at 3:10 p.m.

Elliott Crooke welcomed Melvinia Towns to the committee.  Melvinia is Payroll Manager for the Law Center and will be replacing Therese Stratton as the LC’s AAP representative on the Benefits Advisory Committee. 

Approval of Minutes from June 28 Meeting

The minutes from the June 28 meeting were unanimously approved.

Charles DeSantis provided the group with a brief update of ‘What’s New in Benefits.’

  • A communication reminding faculty and staff to apply for their Fall 2006 Tuition Assistance Program (TAP) benefits went out by e-mail last week.  The message incorporated a new logo for the Office of Faculty and Staff Benefits and came directly from Charles.  This style of communication marks a shift that will be reflected in all benefits communications moving forward.
  • A ‘chooser tool’ is being reviewed for possible implementation during Open Enrollment this fall.   This tool will allow employees to rank available health plans as they relate to their own needs and priorities as users.
  • Open Enrollment communications will begin as early as late August/early September focusing on education surrounding choice and options.  Specific outreach efforts will include multiple meetings, and benefits fairs, across all campuses, open enrollment guides, and an updated website.   This year there will be bi-lingual outreach (English and Spanish).  It was suggested that there be a glossary of benefits-specific concepts would be a helpful tool for the GU community.  It was also recommended that having meetings with specific departments would be an effective way to connect with faculty. 

Medical Plan Discussion & Recommendation


Charles DeSantis led the committee in review and further discussion of the medical plan recommendation made by the subcommittee charged with exploring potential plan changes for 2007.   

The recommendation of the subcommittee is to add a third plan (CareFirst POS Open Access) and adopt a 4-tier enrollment structure.  There was general support of this recommendation among members of the BAC, a formal vote will be taken at the August meeting.

A formal recommendation concerning dental replacement plans will be presented to the BAC following additional deliberations by the subcommittee.  

University Contribution Philosophy, continued discussion


The committee reviewed the various contribution scenarios under consideration including: no change, fixed percentage contribution, or fixed dollar contribution.  Concerns were raised regarding the impact the fixed dollar contribution strategy would have on UHC PPO enrollees.  A suggestion was made that GU could phase in the full premium impact for PPO enrollees over time (by 2008). 

At the next meeting the BAC will be asked to vote on a formal recommendation for the President’s Executive Committee on the following items:

  • 4-tier enrollment structure
  • CareFirst POS
  • Fixed $ vs. fixed rate contribution philosophy
  • Subsidy for UHC (if Fixed $)
  • Dental

Data will be distributed in advance of the meeting in such a format that will allow those members unable to attend the meeting to submit their vote electronically.  The August meeting will be rescheduled to earlier in the month in order to provide the President’s Executive Committee its formal recommendations.

The meeting adjourned at 5:06 p.m.