Benefits

Welcome to the Benefits Resource Page 

You may use the navigation links on the left-hand side to access additional information you may need such as our current calendar year plans and premiums.

Employee Benefits Summary

The following paragraphs briefly describe the benefit programs of the institution available to all regularly employed staff members serving in a half-time or better capacity. Further details on these benefits are available in Human Resources and Employee Development.

  • Sick Leave: Staff employed on a half-time or better regular basis are entitled to a monthly sick leave accrual. The maximum monthly accrual is eight hours per month for full-time staff. Other eligible staff members earn sick leave in an equivalent ratio to their percentage of employment. There is no limit on the amount of sick leave one may accrue.

  • Vacation Time: The rate of accumulating annual leave is based on the anniversary date of current employment as shown below. Regular employees working half-time or more shall earn and accrue vacation time in an equivalent ratio to their percentage of time employed. Accumulated vacation leave cannot exceed 360 hours at December 31 of each calendar year. Upon termination of employment, vacation accrued values may be paid to the staff member, not to exceed the 360 maximum.

  • Social Security: All regular staff members are covered by Social Security. Enrollment in this program and deductions will be taken from all earned wages.

  • Worker’s Compensation: Provisions of the Worker’s Compensation Act administrated by the State of Georgia’s Department of Administrative Services (DOAS) cover all staff members. If you are injured on the job, you must report the injury to your supervisor immediately.  Your supervisor will report your injury to DOAS and AmeriSys who will assist in selecting a physician as well as scheduling appointments and follow-up care.

  • Retirement Plans: Half-time or better regularly employed staff members must participate in the Teachers Retirement System of Georgia’s retirement plan. Part-time staff members not otherwise covered by a public retirement program must participate in the State of Georgia’s Defined Contribution Plan. Those requiring further details on these programs are encouraged to contact Human Resources and Employee Development.

  • Supplemental Retirement Plans: The advantage of pre-tax savings programs under the provisions of Section 403(b) and 457 of the I.R.S. code is available to all staff members; including temporary staff. You may contact Human Resources and Employee Development to determine which companies are represented.

 

Group Insurance Programs

 A comprehensive group insurance package is available to all half-time or better regular staff members. The following paragraphs briefly discuss the types of coverage and eligibility requirements. Full details are available in Human Resources and Employee Development and coverage’s are subject to change as approved by the Board of Regents.

  • Long Term Disability: Available upon employment without proof of medical insurability, thereafter, during open enrollment with medical approval by the company.

  • Basic Life Insurance: The University upon your employment provides $25,000 in life insurance. Enrollment is automatic; however, beneficiary and other personal data are required. Human Resources and Employee Development will provide forms for your completion.

  • Supplemental Life Insurance: Upon employment and without proof of insurability within a 30-day period, you may purchase up to three times your contract salary in additional life insurance.  Premiums are based upon employee’s age and amount of protection elected.   Thereafter, requested enrollment is limited to open enrollment period and proof of insurability must be provided to company for approval of coverage.

  • Spouse and Child Life:

  • Health Insurance: Within a 30-day period of your employment, and without proof of insurability, you may enroll yourself and eligible dependents in the health insurance program. Employees have the option of going with one of 3 plans under the health insurance program: Preferred Provider Option (PPO), PPO Consumer Choice or HSA-PPO(HDHP). Enrollment beyond initial eligibility can only be accomplished during the open enrollment period.  Further details of the program are available in Human Resources and Employee Development. 

  • Dental Insurance: The dental plan provides for two check-ups and cleanings per year without a deductible and coverage for restorative work at 80% after a $50 annual deductible. The plan has a $1,000 orthodontic lifetime maximum benefit and $1,500 annual maximum benefit per person. 

OTHER BENEFITS

  • Family Medical Leave: Any regular employee who has been employed on a half-time or greater basis by Valdosta State University for at least twelve months and who meets the federally defined criteria  is eligible for twelve weeks of family leave during a twelve month period commencing on the date the family leave begins. Family leave shall be unpaid leave; however, if an employee is eligible to use accumulated sick and/or annual leave, the employee may do so after obtaining permission from his/her supervisor.

  • Flexible Benefit Programs: All eligible employees may participate in this program, which is authorized under Section 125 of the I.R.S. Code. Enrollment may be upon employment and/or during the open enrollment period. Changes cannot be made unless a qualifying event occurs, e.g., marriage, death. Changes must be consistent with qualifying event. Currently two options are available, and they are briefly described below.

    a) Dependent Care Account: Those having eligible dependents may pay their child care expenses with “pre-tax” dollars.

    b) Medical Spending Account: You may pay non-reimbursed medical expenses with “pre-tax” dollars, thus effecting tax savings and reducing overall medical expenses. Details on these programs are available in Human Resources and Employee Development.

  • Open Enrollment Period: All programs that are open enrolled may be changed during the open enrollment period (Dates to be announced) with changes becoming effective January 1st of the ensuring year.

  • Benefits at Retirement: Certain benefits may be continued upon your retirement, assuming you have 10 years of University System service and you meet the requirements for the associated plan of retirement. Details on these benefits are available in Human Resources and Employee Development.

  • Benefits at Termination: Certain programs of insurance may be converted to private coverage upon separation. Conversion must be made during a 30-day period following last date of employment. Contact Human Resources and Employee Development for further details. 

  • Corporate Membership with YMCA:  Allows family and individual membership for the Valdosta and Lake Park facilities at a discounted corporate rate. Contact Human Resources and Employee Development for membership requirements. 

  • Georgia Higher Education Savings Plan:  Employees participate in this “pre-tax” program which offers a smart and flexible way to help save for future higher education expenses for eligible dependents. 

  • Long Term Care:  Involves a wide variety of services for the employee and eligible dependents with prolonged physical or cognitive disability.  Offered within the first 30 days of employment and during open enrollment.  See Human Resources and Employee Development for more details.

  • AFLAC:  Provides several programs that are in addition to regular health coverage and are direct-pay to the employee.  Before tax and after tax plans are available.  Offered within the first 30 days of employment and during open enrollment.  Information is available through the vendor or in Human Resources and Employee Development. 

  • Credit Union: The MEA Federal Credit Union serves our institution’s faculty, staff, and retirees. The convenience of payroll deductions, competitive loan rates, and interest on savings make this an attractive option.

 

Prescription Drug Pricing Overview

 Shopping for the best price on medication is critical. Blue Cross Blue Shield of Georgia encourages members to be active consumers. That means taking time to compare drug prices. There are two basic ways to obtain drug cost estimates:

1. Call the pharmacy customer service number on your health plan ID card. An Express Scripts customer service representative can quickly provide a pharmacy-specific price quote. When calling, the member should give the name of the medication, strength, formulation (such as tablet or capsule), quantity, days supply, and the name of the pharmacy.

2. Visit www.bcbsga.com

HDHP Members:

  1. Log in and choose the “MyPharmacy” tab

  2. Choose “Look Up Drug Prices

  3. Enter the name of your medication in the “Drug Name” field or select a common medical condition and select “Next

  4. Select your correct dosage in the “Drug Choices” drop-down menu. If the initial quantity displayed is incorrect, enter your correct quantity, then select “Next

  5. On your Drug Pricing Results page, view the drug type (Generic or Brand), whether pill splitting applies to your prescription, the name of your drug, estimated cost after discount, estimated home delivery cost and the non-discounted retail cost. You can also view more details about the medication by clicking on it, and you can call the number provided to confirm the cost of the medication using home delivery.

  6. Select “Check Local Prices” to review the costs that others paid for the same medication (might be a different dose) at pharmacies in your area over the past month. NOTE: Prices listed may vary from your final cost.

  7. Take the prescription to a local pharmacy.

The pharmacist can submit a “test claim” to obtain a price. If the cost is too high, the test claim will be reversed, and the member can talk to his or her doctor about alternative treatment, such as lower cost generic equivalents.

 

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. Will member cardholder ID numbers stay the same?
A. Yes, the cardholder ID number will remain the same as it is today.

Q. Will members be able to access their prescription and order information online?
A. Yes. Members will continue to log into their health plan web site to access pharmacy information and online tools. Members will be redirected to the Express Scripts web site where they’ll be asked to register.

Q. What can members do to lower their out-of-pocket prescription drug costs?
A. In the rare instances where the member cost share has risen significantly, members are encouraged to speak with their prescribing physician and their pharmacist about lower cost alternatives, including generic medications and other preferred medications that may be available to treat the condition. In many cases there are multiple prescription products available to treat a single condition, and very often, a lower cost option can be selected without compromising the effectiveness of treatment.

 

Insurance

Failure to Make Premium Payments

When an employee is out on an extended absence without pay, they must make arrangements with Human Resources to ensure that their premium payments are made. As per the Board of Regents policy, if a participant is more than 60 days delinquent from the date of the bill, benefits will be terminated and collection procedures initiated to collect any outstanding balance. HR Reconciliation Procedures and NCO Collection Services.

Retirees who are delinquent in payment of their premium will be notified by ADP/Shared Services.

 

Medical, Dental and Life Insurance Information

The benefit information listed below has been prepared to introduce to you the benefits associated with employment at Valdosta State University. Because employment-related factors change with time and are subject to University, Board of Regents, and State policies, this information is intended to be of an unofficial advisory nature. Should an item be of particular concern, the current policy and procedure should be determined at the time of employment.

Click Here For 403(b), 403B Roth and 457 Information including access to retirement manager.

 

Other Resources and Additional Valdosta State Benefits