Open enrollment

The elections you made during open enrollment for the 2017 plan year are listed on the confirmation statement sent to your work email address on or before November 26. Please review both sides of the statement carefully.

If you find an error or need to make changes to your elections, make the necessary correction(s), sign, date, and return statement as follows:

  • Scan and email to HR.Benefits@hennepin.us OR
  • Fax to 612-348-9638 OR
  • Interoffice mail to HR Benefits, mail code 040

If no changes are needed, no action needs to be taken.

Deadline: 4:30 p.m. CST on Wednesday, November 30, 2016.

Your updated elections will be viewable from your APEX benefits summary on Tuesday, December 6, 2016. To access your benefits summary:

  • Log into APEX
  • Select the “My HR” tab
  • In the Quick Links box, select “Benefits Summary”
  • Change the date to “01/01/2017” and click “Go”

Questions

Contact the HR Service Center

Expand all information

2017 benefits details and changes

To add a not-currently-covered dependent during open enrollment

Submit a dependent verification form and provide proper documentation by 4:30 p.m. on Monday, November 21, 2016, or your dependent will not be covered January 1, 2017.

Dependent verification form (PDF)

What happens if you don’t enroll

If you don't enroll during open enrollment, your health, dental, and/or vision plan election will not change, but your 2017 health and/or dental premium will increase as noted.

If you elected a flexible spending account for 2016, this will end on December 31, 2016.

Learn about your benefits

There are a number of ways to learn about your benefits:

What's changing for 2017

  • Health plan premiums
  • Health plan benefits
  • Health plan tiering (Standard plan only)
  • Dental plan premiums

What’s not changing for 2017

The following benefits are the same as those offered in 2016:

  • Dental benefits
  • Vision benefits and premiums
  • Flexible spending accounts (must re-enroll for 2017)
  • Vacation-PTO cash out
  • Basic life insurance ($30,000)

The following benefits are not part of open enrollment and can be added/changed throughout the year:

Health plan 2017

Health insurance is offered to eligible employees and dependents. It provides medical and pharmacy benefits, plus preventive dental for children to age 19. Your out-of-pocket costs for care and treatment depend on your plan and if health insurance incentive activities were completed.

Health plan option: Advantage

Plan administrator: PreferredOne

This health insurance plan offers employees comprehensive coverage provided through a limited network of physicians, clinics and hospitals. The plan has both in-network and out-of-network benefits. There are no referrals needed to specialists within your network.

Additional benefits of the plan include:

  • Lower premiums - singles save nearly $400 and families almost $1,300 a year in premiums compared to the standard plan premiums.
  • Two free copays per member per year after the deductible is satisfied. Includes office visits and urgent care for illness or injury.
  • Special concierge phone line to provide assistance, referral information and to answer any questions about your network.

Summary of benefits

HealthPartners / Park Nicollet and Fairview / North Memorial / HealthEast

HCMC / Northpoint

Network/tiers

With Advantage you select the network that is right for you. You are able to see any provider in that network for the same co-pay; there are no tiers. If you see a provider not in your network, you will be charged at the out-of-network level of benefits.

How it works

  • Choose a network: be sure to use the PreferredOne provider search to confirm all your providers are in your chosen network:
  • Review coverage summary
  • Enroll:
    • All family members must be enrolled in the same network.
    • A life event only allows the adding or dropping of dependents to the health plan you are currently enrolled in. You must wait until the next open enrollment to change your health plan.
    • If you add a dependent not currently covered to the health plan during open enrollment, you must provide documentation before the end of open enrollment, or your dependent will not be covered on January 1, 2017. Dependent eligibility verification form (PDF)

Health plan option: Standard

Plan administrator: PreferredOne

This health insurance plan offers comprehensive benefits through a broad network of providers. The provider network is tiered based on quality and cost ratings. The tier of the provider you see will determine your out-of-pocket costs, such as deductibles and copays. Each covered family member may use providers in any tier. There are no referrals; you have access to all the providers within the network.

Summary of benefits

How it works

  • Review the network
  • Check provider tiering — some are changing for 2017
  • Review coverage summary
  • A life event only allows the adding or dropping of dependents to the health plan you are currently enrolled in. You must wait until the next open enrollment to change your health plan.

Additional information — both plans

Health incentive 

If you add a spouse to health insurance during open enrollment, both the employee's and spouse's health incentive for 2017 is dependent on the employee having completed the 2016 incentive requirement.

2017 benefit changes to Advantage Plan — HealthPartners / Park Nicollet and Fairview / North Memorial / HealthEast

There is a $150 single person deductible or $300 family deductible for medical services. A deductible is the amount of money you must pay for your medical expenses before your insurance will cover the costs of your medical care: hospital stays, emergency room visits, doctor visits, etc.

The deductible does NOT apply to the following:

  • Preventive services
  • Be Well Clinic visits
  • Online care
  • Allergy injections
  • Prescription drugs
  • Office visits for mental health/substance abuse

There are 2 free office visit copays after satisfying the deductible.

Office visit copay for the following services will increase by $5 per visit:

  • Illness / injury
  • Occupational therapy / physical therapy / speech therapy
  • Chiropractic / acupuncture
  • Scheduled outpatient hospital non-surgical
  • Urgent care
  • Convenience care – example Target Clinic
  • Allergy testing

Office visit copay for the following services will increase by $10 per visit:

  • Home health care
  • Non-preventive dental services

Generic drug copay will increase from $20 to $25 per prescription.

Brand drug copay will increase from $40 to $50 per prescription.

Out of network services:

  • The single person deductible increases from $500 to $1000, and the family deductible increases from $1,500 to $3,000.
  • The out of pocket maximum increases from $2500 to $3500 and is completely separate from the in-network out of pocket maximum.

Advantage Plan — HCMC / Northpoint

There are 2 free office visit copays.

Office visit copay for the following services will increase from $0 to $5 per visit (with incentive) at HCMC/NorthPoint facilities. Other in-network providers will increase by $5:

  • Illness / injury
  • Occupational therapy / physical therapy / speech therapy
  • Chiropractic / acupuncture
  • Scheduled outpatient hospital non-surgical
  • Urgent care
  • Convenience care – example Target Clinic
  • Allergy testing

Office visit copay for the following services will increase by $10 per visit:

  • Home health care
  • Non-preventive dental services

Generic drug copay will increase from $20 to $25 per prescription.

Brand drug copay will increase from $40 to $50 per prescription.

Out of network services:

  • The single person deductible increases from $500 to $1000, and the family deductible increases from $1,500 to $3,000.
  • The out of pocket maximum increases from $2500 to $3500 and is completely separate from the in-network out of pocket maximum.

Standard Plan

There is a $150 single person deductible and $300 family deductible increase for medical services in each tier. A deductible is the amount of money you must pay for your medical expenses before your insurance will cover the costs of your medical care: hospital stays, emergency room visits, ambulance, doctor visits, etc.

The deductible does not apply to the following:

  • Preventive services
  • Be Well Clinic visits
  • Online care
  • Allergy injections
  • Prescription drugs
  • Tier 1 office visits for mental health/substance abuse

Office visit copay for the following services will increase by $5 per visit:

  • Illness / injury
  • Occupational therapy / physical therapy / speech therapy
  • Chiropractic / acupuncture
  • Home health care
  • Non-preventive dental services
  • Scheduled outpatient hospital non-surgical
  • Urgent care
  • Convenience care – example Target Clinic
  • Allergy testing

Office visit copay for the following services will increase by $10 per visit:

  • Home health care
  • Non-preventive dental services
  • Urgent care
  • Mental health/substance abuse (Tiers 2 and 3)

Generic drug copay will increase from $20 to $25 per prescription.

Brand drug copay will increase from $40 to $50 per prescription.

Out of network services:

  • The single person deductible increases from $500 to $1000, and the family deductible increases from $1,500 to $3,000.
  • The out of pocket maximum increases from $2500 to $3500 and is completely separate from the in-network out of pocket maximum.

Top tiering changes for 2017

Health plan 2017 tiering 2016 tiering
Entira 1 2
HealthPartners Clinics 1 2
Northwest Family Physicians 2 1

Adding new dependents

Premiums

Due to increased medical claims costs on our plan, as well as the overall increased cost of healthcare, health premiums will be increasing for 2017. Premiums are deducted from the first and second paycheck each month on a pre-tax basis.

Advantage plan costs for 2017

Fairview / North Memorial / HealthEast OR HealthPartners / Park Nicollet

Coverage tiers County costs Employee cost
Single $648.76/month $51.86/month
Single + spouse $1,297.22/month $349.20/month
Single + child/ren $993.76/month $267.34/month
Family (employee, spouse, children) $1,528.08/month $384.18/month

Advantage plan costs for 2017

Hennepin County Medical Center / NorthPoint

Coverage tiers County cost Employee cost
Single $638.82/month $18.72/month
Single + spouse $1,285.12/month $260.04/month
Single + child/ren $984.34/month $199.18/month
Family (employee, spouse, children) $1,528.08/month $280.10/month

Standard plan costs for 2017

Coverage tiers County cost Employee cost
Single $666.32/month $85.00/month
Single + spouse $1,321.50/month $444.04/month
Single + child/ren $1,012.38/month $339.98/month
Family (employee, spouse, children) $1,571.46/month $494.62/month

Pharmacy

Visit the Navi-Gate for Members website for details - use your PreferredOne member ID to login or register to become a member.

Save money

Reduce your health care costs by taking advantage of the following programs and options:

Plan contact information

Contact providers to schedule appointments, discuss care coordination and obtain other information.

Advantage — HealthPartners / Park Nicollet

  • 952-967-7108 or 800-861-1868
  • 7 a.m. - 7 p.m., Monday - Friday

Advantage — Fairview / North Memorial / HealthEast

  • 612-672-2952 or 855-821-4832
  • 24/7

Advantage — Hennepin County Medical Center / NorthPoint

  • 612-873-5700
  • 7:30 a.m. - 9 p.m., Monday - Friday
  • 8:30 a.m. - 5 p.m., Saturday and Sunday

Health plan administrator: PreferredOne

  • Visit PreferredOne
  • 763-847-4477 (Toll free: 1-800-379-7727)
  • 7 a.m. - 7 p.m., Monday - Friday

Pharmacy

To search for a participating pharmacy or view pharmacy benefit information:

Dental plan 2017

Dental insurance is offered to benefit-earning employees and eligible dependents. The dental plan is administered by HealthPartners. This plan is not the same as the union-sponsored dental plan. To get information about the union dental plan, call AFSCME at 651-450-4990.

2017 coverage

The dental plan offers comprehensive benefits including orthodontia for children, in and out-of-network.  The provider network is tiered.  The tier of the provider you see will determine your out-of-pocket costs, such as deductibles and coinsurance.  Each covered family member may use providers in any tier.

For children 12 and younger, all services except for orthodontia and implants are covered at 100% and there is no maximum annual benefit.

Summary of benefits

Find a dentist

Benefit changes for 2017

There are no benefit changes.

Adding new dependents

Premiums

Premiums are deducted before taxes from the first paycheck of each month.

Single: $35.75 per month

Family: $87.21 per month

Provider contact information

  • 952-883-5000
  • 7 a.m. - 7 p.m., Monday - Friday

Learn more

Watch the HealthPartners dental plan video

Vision plan

Vision plan video

The vision plan video will give you an overview of how this new plan works, examples of how the benefit payment works, how to find a provider, and much more. 

Watch the video (6 minutes)

Vision insurance

Vision insurance is offered to benefit earning employees and eligible dependents through EyeMed.

It provides materials only coverage for frames, lenses, and contact lenses. Out-of-pocket cost for materials depends on the frame and lens options you select.

Eye exams are provided through the health insurance plan.

Plan highlights

  • $175 frame allowance every 12 months
  • Lens OR contact lens allowance every 12 months:
    • $25 standard lens copay (copay varies based on lens type)
    • $175 contact lens allowance every 12 months
  • Fixed pricing on lens options
  • 40% discount on additional complete pairs of frames and lenses
  • Savings on non-prescription sunglasses

Employees can use BOTH the frame and lens (or contact lens) benefit to purchase contacts and glasses in the same plan year. 

Learn more about glasses and contacts (PDF)

Adding new dependents

Monthly premiums

Premiums are deducted before taxes from the second paycheck of each month.

Employee: $5.28

Employee + Spouse: $10.05

Employee + Child(ren): $10.57

Family: $15.54

Contact EyeMed

  • 866-804-0982
  • 6:30 a.m. - 10 p.m., Monday - Saturday
  • 10 a.m. - 7 p.m., Sunday

Flexible spending accounts 2017

A flexible spending account (FSA) lets you set aside pre-tax money from your paycheck to pay for qualified expenses, such as deductibles, coinsurance and copays. Because federal, state, Medicare and FICA taxes are not deducted, you end up with more money in your pocket. These programs lower your taxable income and may affect your future Social Security benefits.

If your spouse has a Health Savings Account (HSA) through their employer, you cannot elect the HCEA. Because both of these plans result in tax savings, the IRS forbids a person who has a HSA from also having access through a spouse to a FSA HCEA which could pay medical expenses.

Health care expense account

The health care expense account is a way for you to set aside pre-tax dollars to help cover medical, dental or vision expenses for you, your spouse (if filing joint income tax return) or any claimed tax-eligible dependent. You or any tax-eligible dependents do not have to be covered under the county's health insurance to have claims reimbursed.

The maximum annual contribution is $2,600 per employee.

Eligible expenses

See a list of eligible expenses.

Enrollment and changes

Employees may enroll during the annual open enrollment period. To enroll mid-year or make changes due to a qualifying life event, complete the mid-year change form (DOC)

Changes to the flexible spending account can only be made if an IRS-defined qualifying life event occurs. If an election change is made, the change only applies as of the date of change. For example, if the account election is $2,000 and on June 1, due to a life event, the election was increased to $2,500 the extra $500 could be applied to claims incurred June or 1 or later.

Reimbursement

There are two reimbursement options available: reimbursement request form or debit (Benny) card. Visit the 121 Benefits website to learn more.

Deadline

To be reimbursed, claims must be incurred during the 2017 plan year (January 1 - December 31). Any unused funds up to $500 carry over to the 2018 plan year. Any unused funds over $500 will be forfeited.

All claims must be submitted to 121 Benefits by March 31 of the following year. For example, claims for expenses incurred in 2017 must be submitted by March 31, 2018.

Dependent care assistance program

This program lets you set aside pre-tax dollars for eligible child day care and elder care expenses. Both the employee and spouse must be working, attending school or looking for work.

The maximum contribution is $5,000 per family per year.

Eligible expenses

Eligible expenses are for a dependent under the age of 13 or one who is physically or mentally unable to provide care for him/herself and lives with you more than half the year. See IRS publication 503 (PDF) for details.

Fees for in-home child care, licensed day care, preschool facilities, before and after school care programs, and elder care can be submitted for reimbursement. Fees for kindergarten are not eligible expenses. If you have specific questions, call 121 Benefits at 612-253-6633 or 1-800-300-1672.

Enrollment and changes

Employees may enroll during the annual open enrollment period. To enroll mid-year or make changes due to a qualifying life event, complete the mid-year change form (DOC)

Changes to the flexible spending account can only be made if an IRS-defined qualifying life event occurs. If an election change is made, the change only applies as of the date of change. For example, if the account election is $2,000 and on June 1, due to a life event, the election was increased to $2,500 the extra $500 election could only be applied to claims incurred June 1 or later.

Reimbursement

For reimbursement, visit 121 Benefits for the dependent care claim form.

Deadline and grace period

To be reimbursed, claims must be incurred during the plan year (January 1 - December 31) or the following grace period (January 1 - March 15). Any unused funds will be forfeited.

All claims must be submitted to 121 Benefits by March 31 of the following year. For example, claims for expenses incurred in 2017 or the grace period must be submitted by March 31, 2018.

Adoption assistance program

This program lets you set aside pre-tax dollars to pay for adoption expenses.

The maximum annual election is $12,000.

Eligible expenses

Eligible expenses as defined by the IRS include:

  • Attorney fees
  • Court costs
  • Counseling fee
  • Traveling fees

For questions about other eligible expenses, please contact 121 Benefits FSA at 612-253-6633 or 1-800-300-1672.

Domestic adoptions

If the eligible child is a U.S. citizen or resident of the United States, program participants can be reimbursed for eligible expenses from an adoption flexible spending account even if the adoption never becomes final. See IRS code section 137(a) (PDF).

Foreign adoptions

If the eligible child is not a U.S. citizen or resident, participants cannot be reimbursed for eligible expenses from an adoption flexible spending account unless the adoption becomes final. Under IRS Code Section 137(a) (PDF), reimbursements of qualifying adoption expenses must have been incurred during the period of adoption flexible spending account coverage.

Enrollment and changes

Employees may enroll during the annual open enrollment period. To enroll mid-year or make changes, complete the mid-year change form (DOC)

Employees may change their elections for adoption flexible spending account benefits upon:

  • The commencement of an adoption proceeding
  • An increase in the number of the employee's dependents due to a placement for adoption or an adoption
  • The termination of an adoption proceeding

The regulations also require any change due to the above events be on account of and consistent with the event. The regulations consider any change that affects eligibility or the amount of adoption expenses to correspond with the change in status.

Reimbursement

For reimbursement, visit 121 Benefits for the adoption spending account form.

Deadline and grace period

To be reimbursed, claims must be incurred during the plan year (January 1 - December 31) or the following grace period (January 1 - March 15). Any unused funds will be forfeited.

All claims must be submitted to 121 Benefits by March 31 of the following year. For example, claims for expenses incurred in 2017 or the grace period must be submitted by March 31, 2018.

Flexible spending FAQs

General 

I’m enrolling in the HCEA-FSA for the first time. When will I get my debit card and how many will I receive?

New enrollees will receive two debit cards by early January.

I know that dependent care election limit is $5,000 per family per year. Can only one parent put aside the entire $5,000? What if they are married and file separately?

If the parents are married and filing taxes jointly, either parent can elect the entire $5,000. If they file separately, each is limited to an election of $2,500 per year.

Health care expense account

Do I need to re-enroll if I used HCEA in 2016?

Yes, you must re-enroll and enter your 2017 HCEA amount in APEX during open enrollment. Do not throw away your debit card.

What do I need to know about the debit card (Benny card)?

  • The is provided at no cost to you. If you request a replacement care, a fee will apply.
  • Your card will activate on the first use.
  • The card cannot be used to pay for over-the-counter medicines (OTC).
  • You may be asked to provide substantiation for some claims, so save your receipts. If you don't respond to the substantiation notice, your card will be suspended and at year-end the amount will become taxable income.
  • Go to the 121 Benefits website for additional information about the card.

When will the 2017 deduction come out of my paycheck?

January 13, 2017.

Is the entire amount of my health care expense account election for 2017 available at the beginning of the year, even though no money has been contributed?

Yes. You can access your entire election on the first day of the plan year. For the dependent care and adoption accounts, you can only be reimbursed up to the amount you have contributed to your account.

Can the amount carried to 2018 be less than $500?

Yes. The rules are you can carry up to $500 of used election dollars to the next year.

I am retiring in 2017. What should I consider when signing up for the health care expense account for 2017?

If you are retiring, you need to be aware your account ends the day you terminate your employment with the county. Any dollars left can only be used to reimburse claims that were incurred prior to your termination. Regardless of your retirement date, your full election for 2017 is available January 1 and if you spend more than you have contributed by the time you retire, the county will not ask you to pay back the excess.

Can I continue my health care expense account after I retire?

You have the option to continue your account through COBRA using after tax dollars.

Claims submission

How do we submit claims for the dependent care expense account?

For any of the accounts, you can file claims online, use the mobile app to upload documentation or fax or mail a claim form with supporting documentation or have the provider certify the applicable section of the claim form as documentation.

How long does it take to be paid out after a claim is submitted?

Manual claims will be processed every Monday and Thursday and are paid on Wednesdays and Mondays.

Open enrollment FAQs

General

When is open enrollment?

  • Begins: November 7, 2016
  • Ends: November 21, 2016, 4:30 p.m. CST

How can I check what benefits I currently have? I don't remember.

  • Log into APEX.
  • Select the "My HR" tab.
  • In the Quick Links box, select Benefits Summary.
  • Change the date to view the date. For example, if today was October 16, enter "10/16/2016" and click "Go."

About health insurance

Do I need to re-enroll this year?

No. If you don't do anything, your current health plan election will roll over to 2017.

How will coordination of benefits work between PreferredOne and another plan we may have through the spouse's employer?

Your coverage through the county is the primary or first payer of your claims; your coverage through your spouse is the secondary payer. Show both member ID cards to your provider when you check in for an appointment.

What is the concierge line?

The concierge phone line provides assistance, referral information and answers to any questions you have about your Advantage network. More information can be found on the concierge service tab on www.advantagehennepin.com.

Will I get new ID cards for 2017?

Yes. New cards will be mailed to you in late December.

About dental insurance

Do I need to re-enroll this year?

No. If you don't do anything your current dental plan election will roll over to 2017.

Will I get new ID cards for 2017?

No.

What is Little Partners?

Little Partners is a dental benefit specifically for covered children up to the age of 13. With Little Partners, most services* (for example - cleanings, filling, extractions, crowns) done by any network dentist are covered at 100%. There are no deductibles or coinsurance and there is no limit on how much care a child can get in a year.

*This coverage does not apply to orthodontics or implants.

About the dependent care assistance program (DCAP)

Who administers the DCAP?

121 Benefits will continue to be our plan administrator for 2017.

Do I need to re-enroll if I used DCAP in 2016?

Yes, you must re-enroll and enter your 2017 DCAP amount in APEX during open enrollment.

When will the 2017 deduction come out of my paycheck?

January 13, 2017.

About the adoption assistance program (AAP)

Who administers the AAP?

121 Benefits will continue to be our plan administrator for 2017.

Do I need to re-enroll if I used AAP in 2016?

Yes, you must re-enroll and enter your 2017 AAP amount in APEX during open enrollment.

When will the 2017 deduction come out of my paycheck?

January 13, 2017.

Who do I contact regarding claims submitted?

121 Benefits, 612-877-4322 or 1-877-918-3622

I still need help and have questions. What are my options?

Benefits-related:

APEX technical assistance/issues:

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