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October, 2011

Important Open Enrollment Information
Open Enrollment Dates Reminder - November 7th to November 18th

Employees have three ways to enroll in, change, or cancel their benefit elections for Plan Year 2012:

  • Online enrollment - the People First online system at will be available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
  • People First Service Center Enrollment - Service Center Specialists can be reached at 1-866-663-4735 Monday through Friday 8:30 AM - 5:30 PM, Eastern Time.
  • Paper Enrollment Forms – You can request forms from a People First Service Center Specialist by calling 1-866-663-4735 or access enrollment forms online on the People First website.

With a shortened Open Enrollment period, it is important to be prepared prior to November 7th. Our office will be emailing your People First ID number in the next few days. A few things you can do to get ready include:

  • People First passwords expire every 90 days. Reset your password by logging onto the People First web site and following the Forgot Password instructions. For further assistance, call 1-866-663-4735. It is important to do this now, as the People First service center will be very busy during the 2 week open enrollment period, and you will experience a long wait time to reset your password.
  • Verify that your home address is accurate in the People First system. If your address is incorrect in the People First system, please email our office no later than October 18 at with your correct address and we will update our records as well as forward an update to People First.
  • Verify that your dependent(s) information is correct, your coverage levels are accurate and the appropriate dependents are tied to your various benefit coverages in People First.
  • Watch for your Open Enrollment packet beginning the week of October 24th. The packet will be mailed to the home address on file in the People First system as of October 20th. Review the enclosed Benefits Statement carefully but remember that the statement WILL NOT include any University sponsored benefits in which you are enrolled, such as Long Term Disability and Long Term Care. University sponsored benefits in which you are enrolled can be found on your Benefits Statement on Gulfline.
  • Refer to the state’s myBenefits and HR’s Open Enrollment website frequently for updates.
  • Review all information and consider your needs and available benefit options carefully in order to make the best possible choices for the 2012 Plan Year.

United Healthcare Update
We are pleased to announce that UnitedHealthcare has signed an HMO services contract with the State as the sole HMO carrier for 18 counties: Bay, Charlotte, Collier, DeSoto, Glades, Gulf, Holmes, Jackson, Lafayette, Lee, Monroe, Okaloosa, Okeechobee, Putnam, Sarasota, Taylor, Walton and Washington.

The State continues to provide the option of a preferred provider organization (PPO) plan administered by Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Florida.

Medco - Pharmacy Benefit Manager
Beginning January 1, 2012, Medco will be the pharmacy benefits manager (PBM) for the State Employees’ Prescription Drug Plan.

Medco does more than dispense pills—their services are designed to help simplify your life. They are a different kind of PBM, using pharmacists, doctors and Benefit Specialists who work together to help you achieve optimal health and prescription drug savings. Here are some of the great features Medco offers:

• Mail order prescriptions delivered directly to you—with free standard shipping

• Online tools to help you find the lowest cost generic and preferred brand-name medications, order refills, check your prescription history, sign up for automatic refills and receive alerts that educate and identify potential drug risks

• Over 50,000 participating retail pharmacies

• Experienced pharmacists available 24/7 to discuss your concerns, including drug interactions and allergies, side effects and what to do if you miss a dose

Medco will work with your current mail order pharmacy to automatically transfer eligible prescriptions to the Medco mail order pharmacy—seamless and easy for you. (Controlled substances and compound medications require a new prescription from your doctor because prescriptions for these medications cannot be transferred.)

Medco’s retail pharmacy network may differ from your current pharmacy network. Please call to discuss how to transfer any unfilled prescriptions from Walgreens, Happy Harry’s or Duane Reade to a Medco participating retail pharmacy or to Medco’s mail order pharmacy.

In December look for your welcome package. You’ll get your new ID card and information about your prescription drug benefits, how to submit prescriptions to Medco, and the new services available to you. As of January 1, 2012, remember to show your Medco ID card to your network pharmacist when filling prescriptions. Please note: Medco’s preferred drug list (PDL) may differ from the one you are currently using, so we recommend that you check to see if your drug is on their PDL.

Starting Monday, September 26, 2011, Medco Member Services representatives will be available 24/7 toll-free at 1-877-531-4793 and you will be able to visit online at

Behavioral Health Benefits for PPO Plan Members
Effective December 1, 2011, New Directions Behavioral Health will be the contracted network manager for BlueCross and BlueShield of Florida (BCBSF) assisting in the management of behavioral health benefits on behalf of BCBSF for all members, including State Employees’ PPO Plan members. This is similar to other network management programs BCBSF and other major healthcare companies utilize today throughout the country.

Plan provisions and coverage for mental health services remain the same. New Directions will be involved in the utilization management of all acute inpatient psychiatric and substance abuse admissions, case management and physician consultation for difficult cases and will integrate medical and behavioral case management for co-management of co-morbid cases just as it is done for the State Employees’ PPO Plan members today.

In addition, with state approval, New Directions can offer a number of programs not offered today, such as 24/7 member access, assertive case management, New Directions case and care technology, and Employee Assistance Plan (EAP) services, all of which provide additional value to members.

Before receiving any health care or mental health services, members should always call providers to be sure they are still in the BCBSF or New Directions network. Out-of-network services are covered, but members pay a higher out-of-pocket cost.

If a mental health care provider leaves the network, members can call New Directions at (888) 611-6285 and nominate the provider for inclusion in their network.