PEBB Program's May For Your Benefit newsletter

Wed, 05/19/2021

May newsletter now available

The Public Employees Benefits Board (PEBB) Program's For Your Benefit newsletter is your source for information and updates about your health benefits. 

Read the full issue »

In this issue...

Coronavirus update

COVID-19 vaccinations are covered by all PEBB medical plans, with no cost to members. Learn about vaccine locations on the Department of Health’s website.

SmartHealth, our voluntary wellness program for non-Medi­care members, has activities to help you stay healthy — physically and mentally — while staying home. Log in to SmartHealth.

Thinking about retirement?

It’s never too early to start weighing your options for health plan coverage after your employer-paid coverage ends. One of your options is PEBB retiree insurance coverage. If you choose to enroll, keep in mind that it doesn’t happen auto­matically.

Get the scoop

Medical FSA and DCAP enrollees — Rule changes due to COVID-19

We’re offering extra flexi­bility with 2020 and 2021 Medical Flexible Spending Arrangement (FSA) and De­pendent Care Assistance Pro­gram (DCAP) funds. Learn more about these oppor­tunities.

Will your life and AD&D insurance money go where you want it to?

If you don’t name a beneficiary for your life and AD&D insurance, you run the risk that your loved ones won’t receive a payment when they need it most.

If you haven’t named a beneficiary, MetLife will mail you a letter this summer with instructions about how to name one. You can make beneficiary changes at any time using MetLife’s MyBenefits portal. You may also download the Group Term Life Insurance Beneficiary Designation form. Call MetLife at 1-866-548-7139 with questions.

Keep children safe with well-child checkups

Following your provider’s recom­mended plan for checkups ensures problems are found and treated early. These exams are covered by all health insurance plans and include things not done during other visits, including:

  • Vaccines
  • Family health history
  • Routine hearing or vision screening
  • Blood lead screening
  • Oral health
  • Behavioral health

To learn more about the importance of staying up to date on vac­cines during the COVID-19 pandemic, watch Washington First Lady Trudi In­slee’s video message on YouTube.

Confused by health care jargon

When you’re navigating health care, it’s easy to get confused by all that jargon. Here’s a short list of important terms to help you better understand your health plan coverage. 

  • Allowed amount: The most the plan pays for a specific covered service, supply, or prescription drug. For network providers, the provider cannot bill the member for any amount over the allowed amount.
  • Balance billing: When a provider bills you for the difference between the billed amount and the allowed amount. Only out-of-network providers can balance bill patients, except in circumstances where the Balance Billing Protection Act applies.
  • Coinsurance: The percentage of the allowed amount you pay. This includes many medical services and prescription drugs.
  • Copay: The fixed dollar amount you pay when receiving specific services, treatments, or supplies, such as office visits or prescriptions.
  • Deductible: A fixed dollar amount you pay each calendar year for some health care and/or prescription drug expenses before the plan starts paying for covered services.

You can also visit the Glossary of Health Coverage and Medical Terms on the federal health plan marketplace website.

Invest in your mental health

Mental health includes our emotional, psychological, and social well-being. It affects how we think, feel, and act. It also helps determine how we handle stress, relate to oth­ers, and make healthy choices.

Here are some resources to help you.

Find plan-specific resources on the Behav­ioral health services by plan webpage.

Webinar: Tips for pressing pause - Reducing stress and increasing sleep

Chronic stress can impair your immune system. We can help you learn how to slow down, reduce stress, and fo­cus on quality sleep. The Diabetes Prevention Program (DPP) powered by Omada is offering a webinar to all PEBB members to help you focus on small, doable steps, including:

  • Establishing a good sleep schedule.
  • Coping with uncertainty and pressure.
  • Avoiding stress eating and sliding into unhealthy habits.

Date: Tuesday, June 1, 2021
Time: 10 to 11 a.m.
Register for webinar

May is mental health month

No one should feel alone or without the support they need. Staying connected to others and making time for things you enjoy can help your mental well-being. For more infor­mation and links to plan resources, join the “May is Mental Health Month” activity through May 31 in SmartHealth, our voluntary wellness program.

Stay in touch

Keep your address up to date so we can send you important account information that can’t be emailed. Doing so can keep you informed about changes to your coverage or important alerts. Learn how on the Contact us webpage.