Human Resources and Payroll

Benefits

 

Health Benefits

What is it?

Health Insurance provides financial assistance in meeting your family's health care needs. You have the peace of mind that you and your loved ones will be taken care of in times of illness. Preventive health care can provide for a longer and healthier life. Health insurance is another important benefit that Mason offers to help its employees.

The Commonwealth of Virginia provides health insurance coverage to full-time employees and part-time faculty and classified staff who work at least 30 hours a week, as well as their eligible dependents. Premiums are shared between the employee and the University and are payroll-deducted on a pre-tax basis through premium conversion. Faculty and Staff who work a minimum of 20 hours but less than 30 hours per week are also eligible for health insurance but pay the Total Premium (Employer and Employee portions), payroll-deducted on a pre-tax basis.

There are three levels of membership: single, employee plus one, and family.

Employees must enroll within 30 days of employment. Employees who waive health insurance when first hired, can only elect coverage under a qualifying event or during the annual open enrollment. Coverage is effective on the first of the month coinciding with or following the date of employment.

The State holds an annual health insurance Open Enrollment period in the spring of each year during which employees may change their health plan/options or membership levels. Enrollment dates will be communicated by HR/Payroll to the university community via e-Files, the weekly electronic newsletter which is the official communication vehicle of the University.

Membership changes can also be made within 60 days of a qualifying mid-year event and will take effect on the first of the month following receipt of a completed enrollment form. If you don/t qualify for the State-sponsored plan but need health insurance coverage, see the information on available direct pay insurance plans.

Who is eligible?

Full-time faculty and staff and part-time faculty and classified staff who work at least 30 hours per week as well as their eligible dependents. Premiums are shared between the employee and the university. Part-time faculty and classified employees who work a minimum of 20 hours but less than 30 hours per week are also eligible for health insurance but pay the total premium (Employer and Employee portions).

All new employees and employees wishing to add a dependent to their coverage will need to provide additional documentation. For a description of the documentation needed, please visit Eligibility Definitions and Documentation.

Why do I need it?

Without health insurance, your health care costs become your sole responsibility. While the decision to purchase health insurance is a personal one, Mason prides itself on offering four different programs with different costs, provider networks and benefits to help meet your family's health care needs. With health care costs always on the rise, even a minor illness could cost you more than your annual premium.

The Mason Human Resources Department is here to help guide you through this process should you have any additional questions. Please call 703-993-2600.

What is it at Mason?

There are four health insurance plans to choose from: COVA Care (Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield (BC/BS)*, COVA HealthAware (Aetna), COVA HDHP (High Deductible Health Plan), and Kaiser Permanente HMO.

There is also a TRICARE voluntary supplement available which coordinates with federal TRICARE benefits.

*COVA Care is the BC/BS plan for Commonwealth of Virginia employees; Anthem is the regional vendor for BC/BS.