State Employees Can Change Health Insurance or Opt Out by Dec. 15

Published November 15, 2017

Health insurance carriers announce changes for 2018. State employees can make allowed changes to health insurance through 12/15/17.  

Eligibility

Active state employees who are enrolled in the New York State Health Insurance Program (NYSHIP) are eligible to:

  • Transfer health care options
  • Change from family to individual coverage
  • Voluntarily cancel coverage 
  • Enroll in the Opt-out Program (if eligible)

Employees currently participating in the NYSHIP Opt-out Program must re-enroll for 2018.

No action is required if you wish to keep your current health plan.

Employees participating in the NYSHIP Opt-out Program must re-enroll every year.

Changes will go into effect on 12/28/2017.

2018 Health Insurance Costs

If you have questions about plan coverage, please contact the carriers directly (phone numbers are listed below).

Plan Office Co-pay Biweekly Cost
Salary of $41,756 or Less or Grade 9 or Less Individual   Family 
Empire Plan (PPO):
1-877-769-7447
$20 $43.00 $188.41
Blue Cross Blue Shield of WNY (HMO):
716-884-2800
$20 $39.50 $170.50
Independent Health Association (HMO):
1-800-453-1910
 $20 $37.05 $158.14
Salary Greater Than $41,756 or Grade 10 or Higher Individual  Family 
Empire Plan (PPO):
1-877-769-7447
$20 $57.33 $224.29
Blue Cross Blue Shield of WNY (HMO):
716-884-2800
$20 $52.67 $203.08
Independent Health Association (HMO):
1-800-453-1910
$20 $49.40 $188.43

To Make Your Changes

Download

  • All forms and supporting documentation are due in our offices (120 Crofts Hall) by close of business December 15, 2017

Download and follow the instructions provided in the enrollment packet.  Incomplete paperwork cannot be processed.

Opt-Out Program Eligibility

The Opt-out Program is available to eligible employees who have other employer-sponsored group health insurance. YOU MUST RE-ENROLL IN THE OPT-OUT PROGRAM EVERY YEAR.

Eligibility Requirements for the Opt-out Program:

  • You must be a member of a group eligible for the Opt-out Program and you must have been enrolled in NYSHIP by April 1, 2017.
  • You must be a member of a group eligible for the Opt-out Program and you must have been enrolled in NYSHIP on your first date of NYSHIP eligibility if that date is later than April 1, 2017.
  • You must have remained continuously enrolled in NYSHIP while eligible for the employee share of the premium through the end of 2017.
  • You are currently participating in the Opt-out Program and you wish to continue your enrollment.

Enroll or Re-Enroll in the Opt-out Program

Download

Making Other Insurance Changes

Other changes that are based on life events, such as marriage, can only be made when the event occurs.  

Contact an Expert About Submitting Changes

Nadine Burns

Health Benefits Administrator

State Benefit Services

Phone: 716-645-4471

Email: nmburns@buffalo.edu

Lissa Jasinowski

Retirement Administrator

State Benefit Services

Phone: (716) 645-4488

Email: lmt22@buffalo.edu

Claudia Samulski

State Benefit Services

Phone: 716-645-4487

Email: samulski@buffalo.edu

Amy Myszka

Director

Benefits and Work Life Balance

Phone: 716-645-5357

Email: amyszka@buffalo.edu