The APWU Health Plan is closely monitoring the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. The cost of testing is a rising concern among postal and federal employees and retirees.

APWU Health Plan members will have access to coronavirus testing, as prescribed by a health care professional, and the Health Plan will waive the deductible and coinsurance. Containing the outbreak is the Health Plan’s number one priority.

Testing is available at LabCorp and Quest Diagnostics.

Any individual who suspects they may have been exposed to the coronavirus or is exhibiting symptoms should consult with their health care professional to make the appropriate testing recommendation, in line with CDC guidelines.

To lessen your risk of exposure, members should use your telehealth options. As a reminder, virtual visits are a great option when you need to see a doctor without leaving home. With a virtual visit, you can see and talk to a doctor from your phone, tablet, or computer—24 hours a day, 7 days a week. In addition to providing a consultation and diagnosis, doctors can send a prescription to your local pharmacy.

High Option Members

Virtual visits are available at a reduced copay of $15. Visit American Well online at https://business.amwell.com/ or call 1-855-818-DOCS for medical care. Health epidemics can increase feelings of stress, anxiety and sleeplessness, visit MDLIVE online at https://www.mdlive.com/ or call 1-888-430-4827 for help.

Consumer Driven Option Members

To get started, call 1-855-615-8335 or log in to myuhc.com® and choose Connect with a doctor online.

Toys for Tots

The APWU Health Plan exceeded our goals and collected 518 new unwrapped toys to donate to local children. $1,172.50 was raised by raffle and cash donation.  All money raised was used to purchase toys.

The Toys for Tots program was established in 1947. According to the toysfortots.org the organization has distributed 566 million toys to 258 million children. The APWU Health Plan employees are proud to support this charity

To thank our employees for their generosity a pizza party was held on December 11, 2019.  I would like to personally thank our employees who chose to contribute to this campaign. Due to their efforts less fortunate children in the Baltimore area had a brighter holiday season.


APWU Health Plan Helps Those in Need

The APWU Health Plan Employees continue our annual food drive that benefits the Maryland Food Bank. The 2018 drive employees donated 1,956 items the equivalent of 1,304 meals.

As part of our Employee Appreciate Rewards for reaching our Maryland Food Drive Weekly Goals, APWU Health Plan received a visit from the Kona Ice Truck on May 01, 2019!

The drive is scheduled to end on May 10, 2019. The Health Plan is on track to exceed our 2018 contributions helping families in need throughout the Baltimore areaKona Ice Truck.

Postal Worker Magazine Article

Recently I received the feedback from a reader of the Postal Worker Magazine and this blog. The readers comments are paraphrased below to protect the their identity and personal health information.

I found your March/April Postal Worker Magazine article to be unbalanced. Your article should have featured resources for your members that have dependents who will age out of FEHB coverage. Specifically information about COBRA and how the insulin dependent diabetics could have continued to have identical health coverage.

Thank you to everyone who reaches out to the APWU Health Plan Directors Blog. Input of any kind is always appreciated as that is how we stay so well connected to the membership, by allowing direct communication with the highest level of our management.

As far as the comments above, I stand by my article in the APWU Postal Worker magazine. The cost of injectable drugs has increased 15% per year from 2008-2016 making insulin and other lifesaving drugs unaffordable for the insured and uninsured alike.

I understand your point but unfortunately members of a FEHB insurance plan DO NOT have the ability to participate in COBRA benefits. The APWU Health Plan only insures Postal, Federal active employees and Retirees. Our members are not allowed to invoke COBRA benefits. However I appreciate your point and the opportunity to educate everyone on what the options are if one loses FEHB coverage due to aging out of the plan.

If you lose Federal Employee Health Benefit coverage because you no longer qualify as a family member you may be eligible for TCC (Temporary Continuation of Coverage.) Full details about TCC are available on the OPM website https://www.opm.gov/healthcare-insurance/healthcare/temporary-continuation-of-coverage/#url=Pamphlet.

The employing office is not obligated to inform you of your child’s eligibility for TCC and conversion rights when he/she is no longer eligible for coverage. You must contact your Human Resources Office within 60 days of your child’s 26th birthday to inform them that your child is turning age 26 and that you are interested in enrolling them in TCC or a conversion plan.

According to OPM.gov children and former spouses can continue TCC for up to 36 months after the date of the qualifying event when the child was covered under regular FEHB enrollment. Also, OPM enrollees are responsible for the full costs of the TCC plan, this is the enrollee share, the government share and a 2% administration charge which makes these plans very expensive which is not helpful to working Americans. The guide that lists premiums is located on the OPM website http://www.opm.gov/insure/health/planinfo/guides/index.asp.

Information on enrolling in the Temporary Continuation of Coverage (TCC) is available directly from OPM at Get the RI 79-27, which describes TCC, from your employing or retirement office or from www.opm.gov/healthcare-insurance/healthcare/planinformation/ guides. It explains what you have to do to enroll.

Another option is a person losing FEHB coverage may elect to enroll in and ACA marketplace plan. More information about the marketplace is available at www.healthcare.gov , information about our conversion plan is at www.apwuhp.com  , or on page 12 of our federal brochure https://www.apwuhp.com/our-plans/compare-plan-options/.


APWU Health Plan Celebrates Women’s History Month

March is Women’s History Month and is an ideal time to celebrate the brave, bold and fearless women who have influenced history. The important role women have played in shaping this country our world cannot be overlooked. It is important that we honor the impressive contributions women have made to the APWU Health Plan, the union movement, our country and the world we share.

Today we are proud to provide a token of our appreciation to the women of the APWU Health Plan for all they do on behalf of our membership and to celebrate women’s history month. Team members received a Women’s History Month special edition newsletter and a gift in our cafeteria. Monitors throughout the APWU Health Plan have been displaying a special Women’s History Month Message. This celebration was well received and a great success.

If you would like to learn more about Women’s History Month visit https://womenshistorymonth.gov/.Displayflowers

High Option Members: How to fill a 90 day prescription at CVS or Walgreens

APWU High Option members should check their inbox for instructions on how to take advantage of the new 90-day prescription drug benefit available at in-network Smart90 retail pharmacies. If you did not receive the email please check your spam folder. You can update your email address contact with us  by calling 1-800-222-APWU.

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Attention High Option Members: New Smart90 Program

High Option members may now obtain (non-specialty) maintenance drugs at an in-network Smart90 retail pharmacy (CVS or Walgreens). If you are already using mail order and would like to start filling your prescriptions at CVS or Walgreens, you will need a new 90-day prescription. You cannot transfer your existing mail order prescription to the retail pharmacy.

For more information on Smart90, call Express Scripts at 800-841-2734.

Save the Date!

We are thrilled and excited for the APWU Health Plan hosting 2019’s seminar in the Great Pacific Northwest.

Watch your mailbox for our 34th Annual Open Season Seminar Save the Date postcard. If you would like to be added to our mailing list for future mailing please contact John’s Executive Assistant Kimberly at (kbeauvais@apwuhp.com). For additional information visit us at www.apwuhp.com/events.

2019 hpr save the date

Happy Holidays from APWU Health Plan!

As the year draws to a close, I want to take the opportunity to express our gratitude for your membership in the APWU Health Plan. We strive to provide quality, affordable healthcare for all of our members. You, the Health Plan Member, are the reason for everything we do. So on behalf of the over 225 employees at the APWU Health Plan we wish you a blessed holiday season filled with family and friends.

hide-obara-233-unsplashPlease be aware that in conjunction with the Federal Holiday closures, the APWU Health Plan offices will be closed on December 24 and 25, 2018.

APWU Health Plan Dental

Dear Health Plan Representatives,

The APWU Health Plan is offering a new dental insurance plan! In response to feedback from our membership, we are now offering two affordable plan options. Full details about the plan are available on our website at www.apwuhp.com. Just click the link in the blue box.

Copies of this dental brochure are on the way. Our union printer will mail them directly to your local office. Please inform your Local, State and Retiree chapter leadership that they should expect these brochures soon. This is another resource to support their union-owned Health Plan.

To ensure that our members have an opportunity to enroll in this comprehensive plan the Open Season deadline for the APWU Health Plan Dental has been extended to December 20, 2018. This deadline extension is exclusively for the APWU Health Plan Dental and does not apply to other medical or dental plans.

In friendship and solidarity,
John L. Marcotte