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2022 Changes to Benefits

Open enrollment has officially ended.

REMEMBER: If you did not take any action, your current elections will roll over to plan year 2022 at the new rates.

Review the 2022 Benefits Guide for more details about our plans

Upcoming Changes


Stanford Health Care Alliance (SHCA) Medical Plan

Good news! There are no benefit changes to our medical plan for 2022 and postdoc only coverage will continue to be available at no cost to you! Please keep in mind that although the SHCA medical plan lets you access care from in-network and out-of-network providers in the United States, you receive the most benefits and spend less money when using in-network providers.

For the greatest savings to you, receive all services from an SHCA in-network provider when accessing care within these 5 core counties:
1. Alameda
2. Contra Costa
3. San Francisco
4. San Mateo
5. Santa Clara

When accessing care outside of these 5 core counties, but within the United States, enjoy the same benefits and savings when you use the Aetna Choice POS II network.
Please Note: Palo Alto Medical Foundation is not an in-network Aetna provider for our plan and will always be out-of-network.

You can research the full directory of in-network providers anytime. You can also use the Find Doctors and Clinics search at Stanford Health Care Alliance.

If you choose to go out-of-network, either within the 5 core counties or anywhere else in the United States, covered services are paid at the out-of-network percentages. Out-of-network providers can charge you any amount for services. Aetna will pay a percentage, but you would be responsible for anything left unpaid by Aetna. By choosing to go out-of-network, you will pay more and you may need to file your own claims.

2022 Summary of Benefits and Coverages

You can find more information about our medical plan here.

NEW! - Meru Mental Health Program

Available Jan 1, 2022

Meru Health is a 12-week, online mental wellness program that uses a mind-body approach to help reduce anxiety, stress, depression and long-term burnout. The program has been clinically validated by researchers from Stanford Medicine, Harvard and UC Davis. The program is free for Stanford postdocs who are enrolled in Stanford Health Care Alliance and their dependents age 18 and over. Please confirm your state’s eligibility at registration.

Beginning Jan 1, 2022 - New PAP Provider

Aetna Resources For Living will administer the Postdoc Assistance Program (PAP) in 2022. You will have access to all the services you have now from ComPsych with the benefit of having therapists already in the network should you want to continue care with your current therapist. You and your household members will continue to have up to SIX face-to-face or televideo visits with a licensed therapist (per person, per incident, per year). The program is 100% confidential and available at no cost to you.

GOOD NEWS! - Decrease in Dental Premiums

There are no benefit changes to our dental plan and there is a decrease to premiums for 2022. Postdoc only coverage will continue to be available at no cost to you. When you add dependents, you pay part of the dental premium.

Remember to use providers in the Delta Dental PPO network to get the highest level of benefits. Although you can see out-of-network providers, you pay more for their services and may need to file your own claims.

Pharmacy Changes

Maintenance Choice with Opt Out: Fill a 90-day supply of your maintenance medications at a discounted rate with Aetna’s mail service pharmacy or at CVS Pharmacy locations. After your second fill, you must fill 90-day supplies with CVS Caremark Mail Service Pharmacy or at CVS Pharmacy stores. You can opt out of Maintenance Choice by calling Aetna at (888) Rx Aetna (792-3862) and saying you’d like to continue to fill
your 30-day supply at any retail pharmacy at the regular retail copay. If you don’t reach out to Aetna to opt out, you’ll pay the full cost of your medications on the third 30-day refill at a non-CVS or Aetna mail service pharmacy.

Specialty drugs: Your cost share is increasing for speciality drugs. Your first specialty prescription should be filled at a participating retail pharmacy or within the Aetna Specialty Pharmacy Network. Subsequent refills must be through the Aetna Specialty Pharmacy Network. Your cost will be higher when choosing brand over generic unless prescribed “dispense as written.”

  • Generic drugs: $5 copay per prescription, including generic specialty drugs
  • Preferred brand drugs: $50 copay per prescription and 10% coinsurance for specialty drugs, up to $250 per specialty prescription
  • Non-preferred brand drugs: $100 copay per prescription and 10% coinsurance for specialty drugs, up up to $250 per specialty prescription

Health premium increases are always a concern and we take great care when deciding premiums. There will be a slight increase to the cost of medical insurance for 2022.