Employee Health Benefits Overview
- What is health coverage?
- Medical plans
- Dental plans
- Vision plans
- Choosing coverage
- Dependent enrollment
- What Plan am I in?
- Read more about the health plans
What is health coverage?
Health coverage helps you and your eligible dependents pay for medical, dental and vision expenses. The State provides eligible employees with a Benefit Credit sufficient to cover the majority of the cost of coverage. You may choose between different plans and pay the difference between the State’s Benefit Credit and the plans you have chosen.
Medical plans all cover the same services but have different deductibles, coinsurance, and out-of-pocket maximums. You choose the plan that is best for you based on how much you can afford to pay in deductibles and coinsurance as well as the premium.
Dental plans cover different services and reimburse different amounts depending on the plan selected. You choose the plan that is best for you based on the services you anticipate, those that are covered and how much you can afford to pay in deductible, coinsurance and the premium.
Vision plans differ in not only what is covered but also in that the Managed Care plan provides the best reimbursement if you see a preferred provider and the Standard plan reimburses the same coinsurance regardless of the provider you choose. You choose whether to have vision coverage, and if so, whether you would see a preferred provider or a non-preferred provider such as vision chains like LensCrafters, etc.
Some tips for choosing coverage:
- You must have a medical and dental plan if you are in a health eligible position, except for part-time employees for whom coverage is optional. Vision coverage is not required.
- The State’s Benefit Credit is usually enough to cover the premium for Economy Medical and Preventive Dental in full meaning no premium would be paid by you if you choose those plans.
- Be sure to consider the premium you pay as opposed to the benefit you would receive. Calculate the total cost of the premium you would pay each year, remembering premiums are pre-tax, and the total cost of the plan you elect in the maximum deductible and out of pocket amounts you would pay for you and each of your dependents. When considering higher levels of coverage, be certain the additional coverage won’t be more than the premium.
- Consider other coverage you may have such as coverage from a spouse’s plan and how the two plans will coordinate to pay your expenses. For example, if you have vision under a spouse’s plan, it may not benefit you to purchase a second vision plan; or if you have medical from a spouse, you may want to choose a lower level of medical coverage for your plan.
- Consider whether contributions to a Health Flexible Spending Account (HFSA) might be better than an increased premium or another plan. For example, would it be better to put money in an HFSA instead of a vision plan?
Which health plan am I in?
Note that even though the State makes a contribution for all eligible employee’s health coverage, not all employees are covered by the same health plan. While some groups are covered by this AlaskaCare plan managed by the State, others are covered by health trusts. Find out which plan you are in.