Emory Report

March 20, 2000

 Volume 52, No. 25

Human Resources:

Health insurance concerns

Last year, Emory employees expressed concern about the level of service provided by Prudential. In an effort to improve service, AON Consulting was commissioned to help the university select better healthcare vendors.

"The study indicated that Aetna U.S. Healthcare (AUSHC) and CIGNA are the vendors of choice by many of Atlanta's major employers, such as Coke, Bank of America, Georgia-Pacific and SunTrust," said Alice Miller, vice president for Human Resources. "After extensive negotiations, we were confident that AUSHC and CIGNA understood our requirements and would deliver exceptional service.

"Unfortunately, many EmoryCare members have experienced continued customer service problems," Miller continued. "We have identified specific, key issues and are working aggressively with the vendors to remedy the situation.

According to Penny Castellano, chief medical officer for Emory Primary Care, the clinic is working vigorously to improve access to primary care physicians and has implemented measures to reduce phone delays."

One of the major problems is CIGNA's confusion about exactly who is in the EmoryCare network-up to this point, CIGNA member services could not effectively identify network providers. Consequently some employees have incurred out-of-network charges in error. To resolve this situation, CIGNA is compiling a complete, updated EmoryCare provider directory, which will be available soon.

Member services numbers for the various health care plans include: Aetna (EmoryChoice), 877-719-3993; CIGNA (EmoryCare), 800-251-0670; OHS (dental) 800-407-5514; and Emory Vision Care, 770-420-1500.

Emory has also reviewed the prescription drug program. A recent survey confirmed that the University's prescription co-pays are in line with other major employers. Employers and employees nationwide are faced with rising drug costs.

To help ease the burden, EmoryCare members who use the mail-order prescription service for maintenance drugs will now be able to get a 90-day supply for the cost of a single co-pay. EmoryChoice members who use in-network pharmacies can get a 90-day supply of maintenance drugs for the cost of a 60-day co-pay.

EmoryCare members are encouraged to try the TelDrug Line at 800-835-3784 or online at www.teldrug.com for prescription drug information; EmoryChoice members should visit Aetna's Express Pharmacy at www.aetnaushc.com/products/pharmacy_mod.html.

Human Resources is working proactively to ensure employees are not negatively affected by the vendor change.

Wynell Lauver is a communications specialist with Human Resources.

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