On March 1, 2018, members covered by the Self-Funded Comprehensive Medical PPO Plan under the Hawaii Teamsters Health and Welfare Trust will have their coverage transferred to the UHA 600 Medical PPO Plan with an overall comparable list of providers and benefits.
The changeover by the Trust Fund will be seamless and all members eligible for coverage will be automatically trans-ferred to UHA in February for coverage effective March 1, 2018. Members will not be required to fill out a new enrollment form. However, if you will be add-ing a new spouse or dependent child who is not currently on the plan, you must notify the Trust Fund office and complete an enrollment form.
This change affects only those members enrolled in the Self-Funded Comprehensive Medical PPO Plan. Those enrolled in the Self-Funded HMO Plan will continue to be covered by that plan. There is no change to the HMO medical plan or its prescription drug, dental, vision or life insurance coverages.
Why is a change necessary?
The Trust Fund’s Board of Trustees made the decision at their November 7, 2017 meeting after reviewing and consid-ering the current and projected costs for the medical plan, the financial health of the Trust, and the impact of cost increases on subscribing members and their families.
Our primary responsibility as trust-ees is maintaining the fiscal soundness of the Trust and ensuring it continues to pro-vide for the health needs of our members and their families.
After careful consideration, the trust-ees determined that the more extensive resources of a fully insured medical plan would go far beyond the capacity of our self-funded plan to best fulfill those objectives, particularly in taking on future financial risks the Fund could face. We were also given assurances the UHA plan measured up favorably when compared to the current plan in terms of its list of health providers and level of coverage.
Other options the trustees could have taken were to decrease medical benefits or eliminate vision and dental benefits. However, trustees were against those options. They concluded the most prudent action was to continue provid-ing a PPO plan but transfer the risk to an insurance company such as UHA.
A Participant Notice from the Trust was sent to subscribers in December to explain the change. A new UHA ID card will be mailed no later than February 2018. Be on the lookout for notices an-nouncing informational meetings that will be held in Janaury and February to explain the changes and answer your questions.