Benefits Spotlight

As care needs continue to evolve during the pandemic, Bright Horizons back-up care may be able to assist you with meeting those needs. For the months of March and April, all co-pays for center-based and home-based care will be waived. Learn more about back-up care.

2020 1095-C Forms are Available in Workday: Form 1095-C is required by the Affordable Care Act.  Brown University is required to provide this form to employees that were eligible or enrolled in a health insurance plan provided by Brown University in 2020. You may provide this form to your tax preparer to use in preparing your 2020 tax returns; however, you do not need the actual form to be filed with your taxes. Please refer to the following IRS website for answers to questions you may have about this form: 1095-C Form FAQs

To access your form:

1. Please log into Workday here
2. Click the Pay worklet under Applications from your landing page
3. Under View click on My ACA Forms on the right side of the page
4. View or print your 2020 form.

If you have any questions, please email [email protected]

The 2021 Child Care Subsidy for Faculty, Staff, and Postdoctoral Research Associates will be enhanced to include dependents in the sixth grade and below, for a duration of six months from January 1-June 30, 2021. Learn more here.

2021 Flexible Spending Account Update: As part of the latest COVID relief bill (the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021), Brown has adopted the following provisions.

1. GRACE PERIOD EXTENSION:  Brown has adopted the grace period extension.  This will allow participants with balances from their 2020 Health Care and/or Dependent Care elections to incur FSA expenses through 12/31/2021.  This means that you will have an additional 12 months to incur expenses that were left over from the previous plan year that ended on 12/31/2020. You will also have until 12/31/2022 to incur expenses for the plan year that ends 12/31/2021. All claims must be submitted within 30 days of the grace period end date.

2. CARRY FORWARD RULE FOR A DEPENDENT WHO AGED OUT OF DEPENDENT CARE FSA: Brown adopted a special carry forward rule for the Dependent Care FSA for dependents who aged out during the pandemic.  Services for care are reimbursable under a dependent care assistance plan if the care is for a qualifying individual.  A qualifying individual includes a dependent of the taxpayer who has not attained age 13.  This provision allows for 2020 funds to be used for a dependent who turned 13 in 2020.  Similarly, unused funds that are made available in 2021 pursuant to the grace period or carryover extension may be used for a child who is 13 and under during the 2021 plan year.

3. MID-YEAR CHANGES: Brown will be allowing mid-year changes to Health Care and /or Dependent Care FSA elections without an actual Qualifying Life Event.  Allowable changes include enrolling, revoking, increasing or decreasing elections. 
 

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act was enacted on March 27, 2020, and is retroactively effective January 1, 2020.  As a result, the following benefits are now available:

  • Over-the-counter (OTC) drugs and medicines – these items are now eligible for FSA and HSA reimbursement.  Eligible items include allergy medicine, cold and flu medicine, pain relievers, and more. In addition, it expands the definition of qualified medical expenses to include menstrual care products. View eligible expenses.

If you purchased an eligible OTC item on or after January 1, 2020, you can be reimbursed for this expense.  You will need to log into your account at Sentinel Benefits (FSA) or Optum Bank (HSA) to request reimbursement. You can use your Sentinel Benny Card or your Optum Bank HSA card to pay for these expenses at the point of sale.

United Healthcare (UHC) and Blue Cross Blue Shield (BCBS) have announced the dates of coverage and cost-sharing for the following benefits. The end dates for the cost-sharing waivers for certain benefits are listed below for both UHC and BCBS. As the public health emergency is fluid and ever-changing, these dates are subject to change. Please continue to look out for updates on the Benefits Spotlight page.  
 
UNITED HEALTHCARE PPO AND CDHP

  • COVID-19 Testing (diagnostic testing and testing related visits, antibody testing, and treatment): No Cost Share
    • COVID in-network: Extended through April 20, 2021
    • COVID out-of-network: Extended through April 20, 2021
  • COVID-19 Treatment: No Cost Share
  • PPO Plan
    • ​INN Treatment: April 20, 2021
    • OON Treatment: April 20, 2021​​
  • ​​CDHP Plan
    • ​INN Treatment: January 31, 2021
    • OON Treatment: October 22, 2020
  • Virtual Visits (UHC’s version of Telehealth): No Cost Share
  • PPO Plan
    • COVID-19 Related: April 20, 2021
    • Non-COVID-19 Related: April 20, 2021
  • Telehealth: No Cost Share
    • COVID-19 Related: April 20, 2021
    • Non-COVID-19 Related: April 20, 2021
  • ​CDHP Plan
    • Non-COVID-19 Related: December 31, 2020
  • Telehealth: No Cost Share
    • Non-COVID-19 Related: September 30, 2020
  • Telehealth Expanded Coverage (allows for certain providers to provide telehealth services, including audio and video visits): No Cost Share
    • Updated program expiration date: Expanded coverage through December 31, 2020

BLUE CROSS BLUE SHIELD PPO 

  • COVID-19 Treatment (diagnostic testing and testing related visits, antibody testing, and treatment): Cost sharing will be incurred.
    • COVID in-network: Extended through April 20, 2021
    • COVID out-of-network: Extended through April 20, 2021
  • Teladoc (BCBS’s version of Telehealth): No Cost Share
    • Teladoc is normally free of charge if you are a Blue Cross Blue Shield member, regardless if it is COVID related.
  • Telehealth: No Cost Share
    • COVID-19 Related: Extended through April 20, 2021
    • Non-COVID-19 Related: Extended through April 20, 2021
  • Telehealth Expanded Coverage (allows for certain providers to provide telehealth services, including audio and video visits): No cost Share
    • Updated program expiration date: Expanded coverage through April 20, 2021​