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New Anthem Medical Cards

>ALERT >ALERT >ALERT

ATTN FURA FUSD RETIREES

ANTHEM/FUSD SENT US ALL NEW ANTHEM MEDICAL CARDS AND SAID TO DESTROY ANY OLD ANTHEM CARDS

AND THEN ON PAGE ONE – Second paragraph fourth sentence ,

MEMBERS ENROLLED IN THE ENVISIONRxPLUS MEDICARE PART D PRESCRIPTION drug plan, should continue to use their separate prescription drug card.”

SO, — DO NOT DESTROY THAT ENVISIONRxPLUS CARD.  YOU SHOULD HAVE TWO CARDS COVERING FUSD BENEFITS: ATHEM BLUE CROSS (DELTA) CARD

  1. ENVISIONRxplus PRESCRIPTION CARD

If you have destroyed your EnvisionRxplus card call FUSD BENEFITS OFFICE:

559-457-3521

KUDOS TO FURA BOARD MEMBER DEAN CLARK FOR POINTING THIS OUT

Anthem Blue-Cross HACK OF OUR HEALTH CARE INFO

OUR HEALTH INSURANCE PLAN INFO WAS HACKED

→80 Million Anthem Blue Cross accounts were hacked – names, DOB, SS Numbers, email addresses, member ID numbers, etc

→See Fresno Bee, 2-6-15 front page; Page two has possible actions you can take.

*Update – here are links to the Fresno Bee Articles about the hack:

http://www.fresnobee.com/2015/02/07/4368131/no-encryption-standard-raises.html

http://www.fresnobee.com/2015/02/06/4367906/hackers-may-have-breached-anthem.html

→BUT, OUR FURA HEALTH CARE CONSULTANT SAYS:

  1. Sit tight; Anthem is legally required to contract you in the mail, IF YOU WERE HACKED, then act according to Anthem’s advice. When will you be advised,…?
  2. If you want to act now, take the suggestions on Page 2, Fresno Bee, 2-6-15.
  3. Do not call Anthem—not now anyway.
  4. Be vigilant re. your CREDIT CARD statements. Check even the smallest charges, as the bad guys charge small amounts to see if you’re are paying attention.
  5. Phishing: GET DEFENSIVE — do not open any UNKNOWN EMAIL ATTACHMENTS. Do not respond to requests for personal info—even if the sender looks real. Call the sender and verify before answering by email.
  6. ATTEND THE FURA ANNUAL MEETING ON 5-20-15 FOR AN UPDATE FROM THE DELTA/ANTHEM BLUE CROSS REPRESENTATIVE.(AND MUCH MORE)

S.A.F.E. Balance Screenings for Older Adults

SAFE

Provided by the: SAFE – Central Valley Coalition

A Consortium with Fresno State

Are you over 55? Do you have concerns about your balance or a fear of falling?

The next screening dates are on Wednesday, February 11th and March 25th and will be held off-campus, at 1625 E. Shaw Ave, #155, by appointment only. You will be given multiple assessments to determine your strength, balance, and ultimately your risk for falling.  A licensed physical therapist and nurse will be present for all testing. You will need to get a signed clearance from your physician, mailed once you make an appointment or downloadable at www.safecvc.org. Assessments take approximately 1 hour.  At the end of the screening, all participants will receive education materials and recommendations based on the results of your assessment (described below).

Group FallProof Class.  These courses are designed to increase and improve your balance and strength, reduce your risk of falls, and increase your confidence. FallProof was designed by Dr. Debra Rose with the Center for Successful Aging at California State University, Fullerton. This is a 12 week program (2x/week for 1 hour sessions) Class locations are off-campus with easily accessible parking. We also offer FallProof DVDs through the Center for Successful Aging for you to work on exercises at home.

Home Exercise Program. Based on the findings from the fall prevention screening, individualized home exercise programs will be developed and reviewed with the client. 

Community ClassesVarious senior sites in the surrounding areas are currently offering community group balance classes. When appropriate, participants may be given a list of these classes to contact and specific classes that would be appropriate for their skill level and needs.

Fresno State Community Health Nursing. Based on the findings from the fall prevention screening, nursing students will contact interested older adults to perform individualized home safety checks in their residences. Follow up visits can be scheduled for continued evaluation.

Gait, Balance, and Mobility CenterThis is an 8 week program (2x/week for 1 hour sessions) offered during the academic year at California State University, Fresno.  The program is overseen by core-faculty members from the Physical Therapy Department and clinicians from the community.  Graduate Doctor of Physical Therapy students along with faculty discuss each client’s impairments and develop an individualized treatment plan that is carried out by the student. 

If you would like more information or make an appointment please contact

Ashley Hart at ahart@csufresno.edu or 559-278-7539

*$10 Donation Requested, Please Make Checks Payable to Fresno State Foundation, Cash, Visa and MasterCard Cheerfully Accepted*

Retiree Benefits Workshop

You asked for this “workshop” in May

Your FURA in action

Fresno Unified School District

Retiree Benefits Workshop

This 1.5 hour workshop will provide you with an overview of your retiree benefits, including the Kaiser Senior Advantage Plan, and the Medicare Prescription Drug  Plan provided through Envision Rx Plus.

You will learn about the different plan options, Medicare enrollment requirements, and how your benefits are coordinated between the District and Medicare. Representatives from Envision, Kaiser Permanente , and the JHMB will be on-hand to answer your questions.

WHEN:
Saturday, September 27, 2014,
9:00 – 10:30 a.m.

WHERE:
Fresno High School
Royce Hall Theater
1839 N. Echo Ave.
Fresno, CA 93704

Refreshments will be served

VPS Recommendation

I never thought that VSP was that good a deal even when I was still working & FUSD paid the premium. My husband & I both retired from FUSD at *55 yrs*. of age and took a huge cut in our income, so we have to watch our expenses. We opted not to pay for the coverage when we retired because of the cost. Last month, a friend of mine got a full eye exam with dilation at the River Park *Costco* and ordered glasses with new frames & lenses. They also detected some glaucoma and gave her a
referral to an eye medical group for the glaucoma (which will be paid for by her Medical Coverage).

*She paid:*
$60 for the eye exam with the dilation (without dilation iit’s about $2O cheaper)
$59 for the frames she chose ($39-$200 range on their frames & they have titanium if you like light frames) (If they still make your previous frames and you want to reuse them instead–they do charge a fee, but I forget how much.)
$151 total for*progressives*,_*transitions*_ (darkest color), and *anti-reflective coating*
_________________
*$270 grand total

VSP (member costs from the example given on the brochure)
*$20 copay for the eye exam
$20 copay for the eye glasses
$105 for progressives
$69 for anti-reflective
$114.72 member annual contribution
_______________________
*$328.72 grand total (/and this does not include/*/*_transitions_**lenses in this price!!!*/*So you will pay even more than this price to get equivalent glasses!)

Hence, you can save more at Costco ($328.72 – $270 = $58.72) and you can save more or less depending on the frames you choose.

*My friend is as happy with her new glasses as she ever was with any obtained through a doctor’s office.*

*Costco takes appointments or walk-ins. The optometrist is not an employee of Costco. Her office is just located in Costco and she has been there about 8 yrs. This is not meant to be an add for Costco. It is only meant to show my fellow retiree’s on fixed incomes that you can get a better deal than VSP.

I also have many neighbors who have all gotten their hearing aids at Costco, (another non-covered medical need for many of us as we age). They are also very satisfied without exception. Check it out!!!

I hope this helps you make your decision.

Submitted by Cathy Bettencourt

LAUSD vs UTLA

Who said that lightning doesn’t strike twice?

The Los Angeles Unified School District board will vote next Tuesday evening on the “last and best offer” re: negotiations between LAUSD and the United Teachers of LA (UTLA). Here’s a sample how retirees in LA may be in the same boat as FUSD retirees: only worse!

  1. Effective with the 2009 calendar year, LA USD will pay the full cost of medical benefits UP TO THE COST OF A MID PRICED HMO PLAN per employee or retiree.
  2. What is the mid priced HMO? You guessed it: KAISER. This may end up costing each retiree as least $3,600. What do you think the cost will be in five years? I read the plan and didn’t see anything about prescription plans.
  3. If a retiree wants more than the mid priced HMO, the retiree must pay the difference
  4. For retirees on Medicare, then Kaiser is not the mid priced HMO but rather Health Net.
  5. Everyone pays if this proposal is adopted by the LA USD board of education. Is your STRS or PERS benefit increasing by $3,600 per year? Uh, huh, no way. But, keep paying for health regardless of what prior contracts have promised.
  6. RETIREES WHO WISH TO PURCHASE A MEDICAL PLAN THAT IS MORE EXPENSIVE THAN THE MID PRICE HMO PRICE SHALL PAY THE DIFFERENCE IN COST BETWEEN SUCH PLAN AND THE MID PRICED HMO THROUGH AUTOMATIC DEDUCTIONS FROM STRS OR PERS MONTHLY OR THROUGH AN ALTERNATIVE BILLING SERVICE. (I’m quoting LA USD’d last best offer on the table to the LA union)
  7. And…with new hires after January l, 2009, there aren’t life time benefits. LA will pay until the employee reaches 65 and then NOTHING.

Carole Sarkisian
FURA President

Guarantee of life-long benefits in 1968-69

In 1968-69, the FYA had salary committee co-chairmen. They were Con Anderson, later President, and myself. In negotiations, the District offered us, as negotiators, the choice of having life-time health benefits or a salary inccrease. The District argued in favor of the life-time benefits because (1) they said they didn’t have the money to pay for a 5% increase and (2) teachers would benefit from not having to pay taxes on benefits. The district negotiators were Bob Weber, CFO for FUSD, and Bob Hansen, assistant superintendent. We accepted the benefits and had many teachers angry at us because “they couldn’t buy food with what we’d agreed to.” This should be verifiable through both District and FTA records.

Submitted by: Michael Crill
Date Submitted: October 16, 2007

RECENT ITEMS POSTED TO THE LAO WEB SITE RELATED TO RETIREE HEALTH ISSUES

To access the entries listed below, go to http://www.lao.ca.gov/retireehealth/ . Click on the appropriate index category under “Articles by Category,” shown on the left side of the screen.

COUNTIES
Orange County union may be first in California to agree to 401(k)-style retiree health plan (10/18/07)
Los Angeles County establishes trust fund to begin addressing $20 billion liability (10/17/07)

CITIES
Police and firefighters sue Southern California city over retiree health actions (10/19/07)

PRIVATE SECTOR
Union-run fund to pick up 73 percent of GM’s $64 billion retiree health liability (10/15/07)
40 percent of AARP’s “Best Employers for Workers Over 50” offer no retiree health plan (10/14/07)
U.S. House committee looks at NFL retirees’ pension and health benefits (10/18/07)

CROSS JURISDICTION
Under new law, CalPERS prefunding trust to be available to all California public agencies (10/10/2007)
Nationwide, most local governments have no strategy on retiree health liabilities, survey finds (10/8/07)
Goldman Sachs says nationwide public sector retiree health liability tops $1 trillion (9/24/07)

STATES
Coalition targets Michigan legislators’ pay and retiree health benefits (10/9/07)
West Virginia panel rejects proposal after learning it would increase unfunded liability by $54 million (10/5/07)
Facing $14 billion liability, Pennsylvania raises retiree copays (9/29/07)
Maryland public workers union warns against cutting retiree health benefits (9/27/07)
California finance director says administration intends to propose OPEB plan in 2008 (9/21/07)

ITEMS FROM RECENT LAO REPORT ON CALIFORNIA STATE BUDGET

On October 15, the LAO released its annual report, California Spending Plan 2007-08: The Budget Act and Related Legislation. The full report is available on the LAO’s main Web site (www.lao.ca.gov). The report’s description of budget-related actions on state employee compensation and retirement, including state retiree health costs and liabilities, is available at http://www.lao.ca.gov/2007/spend_plan/spending_plan_07-08.aspx#empcomp

Highlights include:

* Overall California state retiree health costs rise 12 percent in 2007-08. Budgeted costs are now $1.1 billion (not including implicit subsidy identified in state’s GASB 45 valuation).

* For first time, Medicare Part D subsidies received by state to be used to cover part of the increase.
* Budget act includes new language to facilitate legislative oversight of CalPERS’ premium increase actions.
* CalPERS adopted 2008 premium increases that average 6.3 percent, the lowest annual increase in a decade.
* Budget includes no funds to begin addressing $48 billion of state retiree health liabilities.
* In addition to state’s $48 billion of liabilities, UC’s liabilities are over $11 billion, and local governments—including school districts—have unfunded liabilities that, in the aggregate, far exceed those of the state.

OVERVIEW OF THE PUBLIC RETIREE HEALTH ISSUE AND THE LAO WEB SITE

For an overview of the retiree health issue and prior LAO reports and presentations, go to: http://www.lao.ca.gov/retireehealth/RetOverview.aspx

SUBSCRIPTION INFORMATION AND COMMENTS

* To subscribe or unsubscribe, send a message with “Subscribe” or “Unsubscribe” in the subject heading to jason.dickerson@lao.ca.gov

* RSS feed for LAO Retiree Health Care News and Reports site: http://www.lao.ca.gov/retireehealth/RSS/RetRSS.aspx
* RSS feed for the main LAO site: http://www.lao.ca.gov/laoapp/rss/rssfeed.aspx
* Comments are welcomed. Also send comments to jason.dickerson@lao.ca.gov or contact Jason at 916-319-8361. You can also click on “Contact LAO” on the left side of the page at the LAO Retiree Health Care News and Reports site: www.lao.ca.gov/retireehealth

The Legislative Analyst’s Office (LAO) is a nonpartisan office which provides fiscal and policy information and advice to the California Legislature.

Regarding Social Security

The Windfall Elimination and Pension Offset provisions of the Social Security system were passed as part of a Reagan “reform” of the system in the mid 80’s. At the same time all federal employees were required to begin paying into Social Security and Medicare in addition to their federal pension/health care program. That included elected officials, eg; congresspersons. This “reform” was to infuse into the system more dollars to “save the system from bankruptcy.” Here is the kicker: Federal employees who do a whole career…twenty to thirty years..and who earn an average $18K a year will be eligible for BOTH their federal pension/health care and a FULL social security payment based on those earnings. Question: Why was it fair to “save money” by penalizing various state, municipal and educational employees who had their own retirement programs but not fair to penalize federal employees. Basically teachers, for example, will be penalized around $250-300 from the “basic” social security amount, which is around $600. Then any additional earnings credit will be applied to calculate what a retiree might expect. That is the pension offset. The windfall elimination clearly assumes teachers, et. al. do not need to receive a spousal survivor benefit because that would be a “windfall.” So, the bottom line: It pays to be a federal employee/retiree.

Submitted by: Larry Smith
Date Submitted: 6-24-07