This website is your source for information about your plan coverage through Syracuse University for 2021. We are committed to providing an excellent set of benefits to protect the well-being of you and your loved ones.  In addition to the information provided within this page, please review our Frequently Asked Questions resource guide.

Should you wish to make any changes to your benefits, please contact Lifetime Benefit Solutions customer service center at 800.493.0318 (TTY: 800.662.1220) from Nov. 30-Dec. 11. The hours of operation are Monday through Thursday from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. and Friday from 9 a.m.-5 p.m.

Information for Those Who Retired On or After Jan 1., 2006

  • Expanded breast cancer screening. All in-network screenings for breast cancer, including preventive and diagnostic screenings, will be covered in full.
  • Flexibility in accessing health care. In response to the global health emergency, telemedicine and telehealth coverage through MDLIVE was introduced to ensure continued access to care. In most cases, your member cost is equal to the amount you would pay for an in-person office visit. In addition, as previously announced, COVID-19 testing is covered in full for enrolled participants.
  • Medical plan deductibles increase. The in-network deductibles for SUBlue and SUOrange will increase by $50, the first routine increase in three years.
  • Enrollment changes allowed for dental and vision coverage. A new two-year commitment cycle for the University’s dental and vision plans will start Jan. 1, 2021, for those retirees that are still eligible for COBRA. Dental and vision benefits will continue to be administered by Delta Dental and VSP Vision.
  • Time to Review Dependent Eligibility
    Please review the Benefits Eligibility Policy and remove any dependent you have on your health plan who no longer meets the definition of an eligible dependent.
  • Easy enrollment
    If you want to stay with the plan that you are currently enrolled in, you do not need to take any action. If you wish to cancel your coverage because you have other coverage available to you that better meets your health care needs, you may contact Lifetime Benefit Solutions from Nov. 30–Dec. 11 at 800.493.0318 (TTY: 800.662.1220).

There are several ways to connect with resources that will enable you to make the best decisions for you and your loved ones.

  • HR Shared Services is available at 315.443.4042 or hrservice@syr.edu to answer your personal questions or assist with requests for accommodations. Virtual appointments are available as well.
  • Call our dedicated Excellus BlueCross BlueShield (BCBS) customer service center at 800.493.0318 (TTY: 800.662.1220) if you need additional assistance regarding your personal medical plan questions. Excellus BCBS has expanded hours of operation Monday through Thursday from 8 a.m.-8 p.m. and Friday from 9 a.m.-8 p.m. With prescription drug questions, contact OptumRx member services at 866.854.2945 (TTY: 711). They are available to assist you 24/7.
  • If you are eligible under COBRA for dental and vision, please contact Delta Dental at 800.932.0783 (TTY: 711) for dental plan questions or VSP at 800.877.7195 (TTY: 800.428.4833) for vision plan questions.
  • Call our dedicated Lifetime Benefit Solutions customer service center at 800.493.0318 (TTY: 800.662.1220) with any retiree billing questions. The hours of operation are Monday through Thursday from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. and Friday from 9 a.m.-5 p.m.

As in the past, we continue to offer those who retired on or after Jan. 1, 2006, and their eligible dependents the choice of three health plan options: SUBlue, SUOrange and SUPro. These plans include medical benefits administered by Excellus BCBS and prescription drug benefits (for those who are eligible) administered by OptumRx. For 2021, there will be no increases in copays or coinsurance for SUBlue, SUOrange or SUPro. There will be a routine increase to the in-network deductibles for SUBlue and SUOrange of $50 for both individual and family coverage.

Health Plan Changes
As of Jan. 1, 2021, the University’s health plan will change in the following ways, subject to applicable cost share:

  • The University has previously covered all in-network preventive mammograms in full. As of Jan. 1, 2021, full coverage will be expanded to include all in-network preventive and diagnostic breast cancer screenings.
  • COVID-19 testing will continue to be covered in full to ensure health plan members have access through the health plan.
  • In response to the global health emergency, telemedicine and telehealth coverage was introduced to ensure members had access to care. These services will continue to be provided, including both provider-facilitated telemedicine coverage as well as telehealth through MDLIVE, at the equivalent cost sharing associated with in-person visits.
  • As a reminder, for those who are eligible for prescription drug coverage, OptumRx regularly evaluates and makes changes to the prescription drug formulary and programs that focus on safety and proper usage of certain prescriptions. If there are changes that may impact you, OptumRx will notify you prior to Jan. 1 with additional information.

The following table summarizes the contributions required for individuals in the SUBlue, SUOrange and SUPro plans. If you also cover dependents, contact Lifetime Benefit Solutions customer service center at 800.493.0318 (TTY: 800.662.1220) for the applicable contributions or view our full list of benefit rates for post-2006 retirees [PDF].

Remember, the University offers an Opt Out/Opt In provision to individuals who are eligible for subsidized retiree health care coverage through the University. This provision gives you the ability to waive out of the retiree health plans with the option to opt back in at a later date, as long as you have had continuous coverage or are Medicare-eligible. For more information on the Opt Out/Opt In provision and the applicable eligibility rules, visit our online resources. If you have any questions about opting out of a University plan, you may contact HR Shared Services at 315.443.4042 or hrservice@syr.edu.

2021 Health Plan: Monthly Retiree Contributions*
Years of Service After Age 45 SUBlue SUOrange SUPro
Pre-65 Adult Post-65 Adult Pre-65 Adult Post-65 Adult Pre-65 Adult Post-65 Adult
1-9 $1,145.93 $137.66 $1,112.23 $132.92 $1,146.01 $140.15
10 $825.85 $97.05 $835.38 $98.98 $833.52 $98.11
11 $788.51 $92.31 $803.09 $95.02 $797.07 $93.20
12 $751.17 $87.57 $770.79 $91.07 $760.61 $88.29
13 $713.83 $82.83 $738.49 $87.11 $724.15 $83.39
14 $676.49 $78.09 $706.19 $83.15 $687.70 $78.48
15 $639.14 $73.35 $673.89 $79.19 $651.24 $73.58
16 $601.80 $68.62 $641.59 $75.23 $614.78 $68.67
17 $564.46 $63.88 $609.29 $71.27 $578.33 $63.77
18 $527.12 $59.14 $576.99 $67.31 $541.87 $58.86
19 $489.77 $54.40 $544.70 $63.35 $505.41 $53.96
20+ $452.43 $49.66 $512.40 $59.39 $468.96 $49.05

*A monthly administrative fee will apply.

Please keep in mind that the University’s plan does not include prescription drug coverage for those who are Medicare-eligible. We recommend that you consider enrolling in a Medicare Part D prescription drug plan once you are eligible for Medicare, and that you make plans three months in advance to replace your Syracuse University prescription coverage when you lose it.

Remember, if you or any of your covered dependents are Medicare-eligible, you and/or they must enroll in Medicare Parts A and B immediately and notify our medical plan administrator. Medicare integration applies to individuals eligible for Medicare whether or not they are enrolled in Medicare; if a Medicare-eligible individual decides not to enroll in Medicare, out-of-pocket costs for claims made under the plan are likely to be significantly higher. If you have questions about this, contact Excellus BCBS at 800.493.0318 (TTY: 800.662.1220).

The University retiree health plans, including SUBlue, SUOrange and SUPro, meet the coverage requirements of the Affordable Care Act. Given the variety of health insurance options available through the Marketplace of private insurers and the subsidies available, you may want to consider whether private insurance is a good option for you and your dependents.

More information about the Marketplace is available by phone at 800.318.2596 (federal) and 855.355.5777 (New York State). You should also compare the coverage and cost of these plans with those available to you through a spouse or domestic partner.

If you are enrolled in the University’s dental and vision coverage under COBRA and remain eligible, this is the year to make changes to your dental and vision coverage—a two-year commitment—unless you have a qualifying life event. The choices you make during this Open Enrollment will remain in effect through the end of 2022, unless your COBRA eligibility ends.

There are no changes to the copays or plan designs for the University’s dental and vision benefits for calendar year 2021. Dental and vision benefit summaries are available online.

If you are enrolled in the SEBF dental/vision plan under COBRA, you may maintain or change your SEBF coverage. Contact SEBF at 855.835.9720 with any questions regarding the coverage options and contributions. SEBF dental and dental with optical COBRA rates are valid from July 1, 2020, through June 30, 2021.

The contributions for all COBRA continuation coverage options are available online.

TIAA
To discuss your investment mix or retirement income options, contact TIAA at 855.842.CUSE (2873) (TTY: 800.842.2755).

MetLife Auto and Home Insurance
Retirees may participate in Syracuse University’s group auto and home insurance program. For a free quote, call MetLife’s local agent, Tom Swanson, at 315.656.2982.

Visit the benefit notifications page to review important legal notices. These notifications are for your reference only. You are not required to take any action. However, if you have any questions on how these notifications may apply to your specific situation, please contact HR Shared Services at 315.443.4042 or hrservice@syr.edu.

Download or View Post-2006 Retiree Monthly Contribution Rates [PDF]

Information for Those Who Retired Under VSIP

  • It is very important to remember that any unused VSIP subsidies will expire on Dec. 31, 2021.
  • Expanded breast cancer screening. All in-network screenings for breast cancer, including preventive and diagnostic screenings, will be covered in full.
  • Flexibility in accessing health care. In response to the global health emergency, telemedicine and telehealth coverage through MDLIVE was introduced to ensure continued access to care. In most cases, your member cost is equal to the amount you would pay for an in-person office visit. In addition, as previously announced, COVID-19 testing is covered in full for enrolled participants.
  • Medical plan deductibles increase. The in-network deductibles for SUBlue and SUOrange will increase by $50, the first routine increase in three years.
  • Time to Review Dependent Eligibility
    Please review the Benefits Eligibility Policy and remove any dependent you have on your health plan who no longer meets the definition of an eligible dependent.
  • Easy enrollment
    If you want to stay with the medical plan that you are currently enrolled in, you do not need to take any action. If you wish to cancel your coverage because you have other coverage available to you that better meets your health care needs, you may contact Lifetime Benefit Solutions from Nov. 30–Dec. 11 at 800.493.0318 (TTY: 800.662.1220).

There are several ways to connect with resources that will enable you to make the best decisions for you and your loved ones.

  • HR Shared Services is available at 315.443.4042 or hrservice@syr.edu to answer your personal questions or assist with requests for accommodations. Virtual appointments are available as well.
  • Call our dedicated Excellus BlueCross BlueShield (BCBS) customer service center at 800.493.0318 (TTY: 800.662.1220) if you need additional assistance regarding your personal medical plan questions. Excellus BCBS has expanded hours of operation Monday through Thursday from 8 a.m.-8 p.m. and Friday from 9 a.m.-8 p.m. With prescription drug questions, contact OptumRx member services at 866.854.2945 (TTY: 711). They are available to assist you 24/7.
  • Call our dedicated Lifetime Benefit Solutions customer service center at 800.493.0318 (TTY: 800.662.1220) with any retiree billing questions. The hours of operation are Monday through Thursday from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. and Friday from 9 a.m.-5 p.m.

As in the past, we continue to offer those who retired after Jan. 1, 2006, and their eligible dependents the choice of three health plan options: SUBlue, SUOrange and SUPro. These plans include medical benefits administered by Excellus BCBS and prescription drug benefits (for those who are eligible) administered by OptumRx. For 2021, there will be no increases in copays or coinsurance for SUBlue, SUOrange or SUPro. There will be a routine increase to the in-network deductibles for SUBlue and SUOrange of $50 for both individual and family coverage.

Health Plan Changes
As of Jan. 1, 2021, the University’s health plan will change in the following ways, subject to applicable cost share:

  • The University has previously covered all in-network preventive mammograms in full. As of Jan. 1, 2021, full coverage will be expanded to include all in-network preventive and diagnostic breast cancer screenings.
  • COVID-19 testing will continue to be covered in full to ensure health plan members have access through the health plan.
  • In response to the global health emergency, telemedicine and telehealth coverage was introduced to ensure members had access to care. These services will continue to be provided, including both provider-facilitated telemedicine coverage as well as telehealth through MDLIVE, at the equivalent cost sharing associated with in-person visits.
  • As a reminder, for those who are eligible for prescription drug coverage, OptumRx regularly evaluates and makes changes to the prescription drug formulary and programs that focus on safety and proper usage of certain prescriptions. If there are changes that may impact you, OptumRx will notify you prior to Jan. 1 with additional information.

As a participant in the Voluntary Separation Incentive Program, you are entitled to enhanced subsidies toward the cost of your health coverage. It is very important to remember that any unused VSIP subsidies will expire on Dec. 31, 2021. As a reminder, when you use VSIP subsidies, your cost for premiums will be subsidized for a total of up to 60 months, as indicated in the chart below.

Remember, the University offers an Opt Out/Opt In provision to individuals who are eligible for subsidized retiree health care coverage through the University. This provision gives you the ability to waive out of the retiree health plans with the option to opt back in at a later date, as long as you have had continuous coverage or are Medicare-eligible. For more information on the Opt Out/Opt In provision and the applicable eligibility rules, visit our online resources. If you have any questions about opting out of a University plan, you may contact HR Shared Services at 315.443.4042 or hrservice@syr.edu.

Medicare Eligibility Required Contribution
Participants who are not Medicare-eligible The University’s subsidy will be increased such that the required contributions are the same as those charged to employees covered under the comparable active medical plan shown in the chart below.
Participants who are Medicare-eligible There is NO required contribution.
Note: The Retiree Medical Plan requires Medicare-eligible participants to have Medicare Parts A and B. For those individuals who wish to have prescription drug coverage, Medicare Part D should be elected as well.
2021 Health Plan: Monthly Retiree Contributions for Individuals Not Eligible for Medicare with VSIP Subsidy Applied
Schedule A SUBlue SUOrange SUPro
Retiree Only $147.88 $143.58 $134.87
Retiree + Spouse/ Domestic Partner $325.33 $315.87 $296.70
Retiree + Child(ren) $285.41 $277.10 $260.29
Retiree + Spouse/ Domestic Partner + Child(ren) $462.86 $449.39 $422.13
Schedule B SUBlue SUOrange SUPro
Retiree Only $129.54 $125.77 $118.14
Retiree + Spouse/ Domestic Partner $284.99 $276.70 $259.91
Retiree + Child(ren) $250.02 $242.74 $228.01
Retiree + Spouse/ Domestic Partner + Child(ren) $405.47 $393.67 $369.78

If you do not have any VSIP subsidy credits, or if you choose not to apply any remaining VSIP subsidy credits to coverage for yourself or any covered dependents in 2021, your contributions will be based on the regular retiree rates as shown below under "Retiree Health Plan Contributions (No VSIP Subsidy Applied)."

Qualifying for Reduced Contributions Under the Health Plan
Depending on your household income and size, you may be eligible for lower health plan contributions under Schedule B. If you were approved for Schedule B contributions in 2020, you do not need to reapply; you will continue to pay the Schedule B contribution as long as you are receiving the VSIP subsidy.

New applicants for Schedule B should visit the Schedule B website for more information. If you think you may qualify, complete the application by Dec. 4. You will be notified after this date if your application is approved.

2021 Eligibility Guidelines For Schedule B Contributions
Household Size Household Income
1 Less than $38,000
2 Less than $52,000
3 Less than $65,000
4 and up Less than $79,000

The following table summarizes the contributions required for retirees in the SUBlue, SUOrange and SUPro plans who do not have or choose not to apply their VSIP subsidy for 2021. If you also cover dependents, contact Lifetime Benefit Solutions customer service center at 800.493.0318 (TTY: 800.662.1220) for the applicable contributions or view our full list of benefit rates for post-2006 retirees [PDF].

2021 Health Plan: Monthly Retiree Contributions*
Years of Service After Age 45 SUBlue SUOrange SUPro
Pre-65 Adult Post-65 Adult Pre-65 Adult Post-65 Adult Pre-65 Adult Post-65 Adult
1-9 $1,145.93 $137.66 $1,112.23 $132.92 $1,146.01 $140.15
10 $825.85 $97.05 $835.38 $98.98 $833.52 $98.11
11 $788.51 $92.31 $803.09 $95.02 $797.07 $93.20
12 $751.17 $87.57 $770.79 $91.07 $760.61 $88.29
13 $713.83 $82.83 $738.49 $87.11 $724.15 $83.39
14 $676.49 $78.09 $706.19 $83.15 $687.70 $78.48
15 $639.14 $73.35 $673.89 $79.19 $651.24 $73.58
16 $601.80 $68.62 $641.59 $75.23 $614.78 $68.67
17 $564.46 $63.88 $609.29 $71.27 $578.33 $63.77
18 $527.12 $59.14 $576.99 $67.31 $541.87 $58.86
19 $489.77 $54.40 $544.70 $63.35 $505.41 $53.96
20+ $452.43 $49.66 $512.40 $59.39 $468.96 $49.05

*A monthly administrative fee will apply.

Please keep in mind that the University’s plan does not include prescription drug coverage for those who are Medicare-eligible. We recommend that you consider enrolling in a Medicare Part D prescription drug plan once you are eligible for Medicare, and that you make plans three months in advance to replace your Syracuse University prescription coverage when you lose it.

Remember, if you or any of your covered dependents are Medicare-eligible, you and/or they must enroll in Medicare Parts A and B immediately and notify our medical plan administrator. Medicare integration applies to individuals eligible for Medicare whether or not they are enrolled in Medicare; if a Medicare-eligible individual decides not to enroll in Medicare, out-of-pocket costs for claims made under the plan are likely to be significantly higher. If you have questions about this, contact Excellus BCBS at 800.493.0318 (TTY: 800.662.1220).

The University retiree health plans, including SUBlue, SUOrange and SUPro, meet the coverage requirements of the Affordable Care Act. Given the variety of health insurance options available through the Marketplace of private insurers and the subsidies available, you may want to consider whether private insurance is a good option for you and your dependents.

More information about the Marketplace is available by phone at 800.318.2596 (federal) and 855.355.5777 (New York State). You should also compare the coverage and cost of these plans with those available to you through a spouse or domestic partner.

TIAA
To discuss your investment mix or retirement income options, contact TIAA at 855.842.CUSE (2873) (TTY: 800.842.2755) or visit tiaa.org.

MetLife Auto & Home Insurance
Retirees may participate in Syracuse University’s group auto and home insurance program. For a free quote, call MetLife’s local agent, Tom Swanson, at 315.656.2982.

Visit the benefit notifications page to review important legal notices. These notifications are for your reference only. You are not required to take any action. However, if you have any questions on how these notifications may apply to your specific situation, please contact HR Shared Services at 315.443.4042 or hrservice@syr.edu.

Information for Those Who Retired Before Jan. 1, 2006

  • Expanded breast cancer screening. All in-network screenings for breast cancer, including preventive and diagnostic screenings, will be covered in full.
  • Flexibility in accessing health care. In response to the global health emergency, telemedicine and telehealth coverage through MDLIVE was introduced to ensure continued access to care. In most cases, your member cost is equal to the amount you would pay for an in-person office visit. In addition, as previously announced, COVID-19 testing is covered in full for enrolled participants.
  • Medical plan deductibles increase. The in-network deductibles for SUBlue and SUOrange will increase by $50, the first routine increase in three years.
  • Time to Review Dependent Eligibility
    Please review the Benefits Eligibility Policy and remove any dependent you have on your health plan who no longer meets the definition of an eligible dependent.
  • Easy enrollment
    If you want to stay with the medical plan that you are currently enrolled in, you do not need to take any action. If you wish to cancel your coverage because you have other coverage available to you that better meets your health care needs, you may contact Lifetime Benefit Solutions from Nov. 30–Dec. 11 at 800.493.0318 (TTY: 800.662.1220).

There are several ways to connect with resources that will enable you to make the best decisions for you and your loved ones.

  • HR Shared Services is available at 315.443.4042 or hrservice@syr.edu to answer your personal questions or assist with requests for accommodations. Virtual appointments are available as well.
  • Call our dedicated Excellus BlueCross BlueShield (BCBS) customer service center at 800.493.0318 (TTY: 800.662.1220) if you need additional assistance regarding your personal medical plan questions. Excellus BCBS has expanded hours of operation Monday through Thursday from 8 a.m.-8 p.m. and Friday from 9 a.m.-8 p.m. With prescription drug questions, contact OptumRx member services at 866.854.2945 (TTY: 711). They are available to assist you 24/7.
  • Call our dedicated Lifetime Benefit Solutions customer service center at 800.493.0318 (TTY: 800.662.1220) with any retiree billing questions. The hours of operation are Monday through Thursday from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. and Friday from 9 a.m.-5 p.m.

As in the past, we continue to offer those who retired before Jan. 1, 2006, and their eligible dependents the choice of two health plan options: SUBlue and SUOrange. These plans include medical benefits administered by Excellus BCBS and prescription drug benefits (for those who are eligible) administered by OptumRx. For 2021, there will be no increases in copays or coinsurance for SUBlue or SUOrange. There will be a routine increase to the in-network deductibles of $50 for both individual and family coverage.

Health Plan Changes
As of Jan. 1, 2021, the University’s health plan will change in the following ways, subject to applicable cost share:

  • The University has previously covered all in-network preventive mammograms in full. As of Jan. 1, 2021, full coverage will be expanded to include all in-network preventive and diagnostic breast cancer screenings.
  • COVID-19 testing will continue to be covered in full to ensure health plan members have access through the health plan.
  • In response to the global health emergency, telemedicine and telehealth coverage was introduced to ensure members had access to care. These services will continue to be provided, including both provider-facilitated telemedicine coverage as well as telehealth through MDLIVE, at the equivalent cost sharing associated with in-person visits.
  • OptumRx regularly evaluates and makes changes to the prescription drug formulary and programs that focus on safety and proper usage of certain prescriptions. If there are changes that may impact you, OptumRx will notify you prior to Jan. 1 with additional information.

Retirees (and their eligible dependents) who retired before Jan. 1, 2006, who were not yet Medicare-eligible at the time of retirement, have access to subsidized coverage through the end of the five-year period that begins on the date the retiree or dependent became eligible for Medicare.

Upon Medicare eligibility, which generally occurs at age 65, if you or any of your covered dependents are Medicare-eligible, you and/or they must enroll in Medicare Parts A and B immediately and notify our medical plan administrator. Medicare integration applies to individuals eligible for Medicare whether or not they are enrolled in Medicare; if a Medicare-eligible individual decides not to enroll in Medicare, out-of-pocket costs for claims made under the plan are likely to be significantly higher. If you have questions about this, contact Excellus BCBS at 800.493.0318 (TTY: 800.662.1220).

Contributions are required for pre-65 coverage only. Below is the schedule of monthly rates for subsidized coverage.


2021 Health Plan: Monthly Retiree Contributions for Pre-65 Coverage*
SUBlue SUOrange
Schedule A Schedule B Schedule A Schedule B
Retiree Only $147.88 $129.54 $143.58 $125.77
Retiree + Spouse/ Domestic Partner $325.33 $284.99 $315.87 $276.70
Retiree + Child(ren) $285.41 $250.02 $277.10 $242.74
Retiree + Spouse/ Domestic Partner + Child(ren) $462.86 $405.47 $449.39 $393.67

  * A monthly administrative fee will apply.

Qualifying for Reduced Contributions Under the Health Plan

Depending on your household income and size (see chart below), you may be eligible for lower medical health plan contributions under Schedule B. If you think you may qualify, complete the application by Dec. 4. You will be notified after this date if your application is approved.

You must apply each year to receive a reduced rate. For more information and a copy of the application, visit the Schedule B website.

2021 Eligibility Guidelines for Schedule B Contributions
Household Size Household Income
1 Less than $38,000
2 Less than $52,000
3 Less than $65,000
4 and up Less than $79,000

At the end of your five-year period (which began on the date that you became eligible for Medicare), subsidized coverage will end. You may elect to continue Syracuse University retiree health plan coverage on a non-subsidized basis, provided that you enroll in Medicare Parts A and B. Information will be mailed to you from our retiree billing administrator before your coverage ends.

Please keep in mind that because this option does not include prescription drug coverage, you should consider enrolling in a separate Medicare Part D prescription drug plan once you are eligible for Medicare. We recommend that you make plans three months in advance to replace your University prescription coverage.

The non-subsidized medical plan costs for 2021 are indicated in the table below.

2021 Health Plan: Monthly Retiree Contributions Per Individual*
SUBlue $137.66
SUOrange $132.92

*A monthly administrative fee will apply.

The University retiree health plans, including SUBlue and SUOrange, meet the coverage requirements of the Affordable Care Act. Given the variety of health insurance options available through the Marketplace of private insurers and the subsidies available, you may want to consider whether private insurance is a good option for you and your dependents.

More information about the Marketplace is available by phone at 800.318.2596 (federal) and 855.355.5777 (New York State). You should also compare the coverage and cost of these plans with those available to you through a spouse or domestic partner.

TIAA
To discuss your investment mix or retirement income options, contact TIAA at 855.842.CUSE (2873) (TTY: 800.842.2755).

MetLife Auto and Home Insurance
Retirees may participate in Syracuse University’s group auto and home insurance program. For a free quote, call MetLife’s local agent, Tom Swanson, at 315.656.2982.

Visit the benefit notifications page to review important legal notices. These notifications are for your reference only. You are not required to take any action. However, if you have any questions on how these notifications may apply to your specific situation, please contact HR Shared Services at 315.443.4042 or hrservice@syr.edu.

Information for COBRA Participants

Open Enrollment is your opportunity to review and update your benefit choices for the coming year. Take action Nov. 30-Dec. 11 if you wish to make any changes to your benefits for 2021.

  • Expanded breast cancer screening. All in-network screenings for breast cancer, including preventive and diagnostic screenings, will be covered in full.
  • Flexibility in accessing health care. In response to the global health emergency, telemedicine and telehealth coverage through MDLIVE was introduced to ensure continued access to care. In most cases, your member cost is equal to the amount you would pay for an in-person office visit. In addition, as previously announced, COVID-19 testing is covered in full for enrolled participants.
  • Medical plan deductibles increase. The in-network deductibles for SUBlue and SUOrange will increase by $50, the first routine increase in three years.
  • Enrollment changes allowed for dental and vision coverage. A new two-year commitment cycle for the University’s dental and vision plans will start Jan. 1, 2021 for individuals that are still eligible for COBRA. Dental and vision benefits will continue to be administered by Delta Dental and VSP Vision.
  • Time to Review Dependent Eligibility
    Please review the Benefits Eligibility Policy and remove any dependent you have on your health plan who no longer meets the definition of an eligible dependent.
  • Easy enrollment
    If you want to stay with the plan(s) that you are currently enrolled in, you do not need to take any action. If you wish to cancel your coverage because you have other coverage available to you that better meets your health care needs, you may contact Lifetime Benefit Solutions from Nov. 30–Dec.11 at 800.493.0318 (TTY: 800.662.1220).

There are several ways to connect with resources that will enable you to make the best decisions for you and your loved ones.

  • HR Shared Services is available at 315.443.4042 or hrservice@syr.edu to answer your personal questions or assist with requests for accommodations. Virtual appointments are available as well.
  • Call our dedicated Excellus BlueCross BlueShield (BCBS) customer service center at 800.493.0318 (TTY: 800.662.1220) if you need additional assistance regarding your personal medical plan questions. Excellus BCBS has expanded hours of operation Monday through Thursday from 8 a.m.-8 p.m. and Friday from 9 a.m.-8 p.m. With prescription drug questions, contact OptumRx member services at 866.854.2945 (TTY: 711). They are available to assist you 24/7.
  • Call our dedicated Lifetime Benefit Solutions customer service center at 800.493.0318 (TTY: 800.662.1220) with billing questions. The hours of operation are Monday through Thursday from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. and Friday from 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
  • If you are eligible under COBRA for dental and vision, please contact Delta Dental at 800.932.0783 (TTY: 711) for dental plan questions or VSP at 800.877.7195 (TTY: 800.428.4833) for vision plan questions.

COBRA participants have the choice of three health plan options: SUBlue, SUOrange and SUPro. These plans include medical benefits administered by Excellus BCBS and prescription drug benefits administered by OptumRx. For 2021, there will be no increases in copays or coinsurance for SUBlue, SUOrange or SUPro. There will be a routine increase to the in-network deductibles for SUBlue and SUOrange of $50 for both individual and family coverage.

Health Plan Changes
As of Jan. 1, 2021, the University’s health plan will change in the following ways, subject to applicable cost share:

  • The University has previously covered all in-network preventive mammograms in full. As of Jan. 1, 2021, full coverage will be expanded to include all in-network preventive and diagnostic breast cancer screenings.
  • COVID-19 testing will continue to be covered in full to ensure health plan members have access through the health plan.
  • In response to the global health emergency, telemedicine and telehealth coverage was introduced to ensure members had access to care. These services will continue to be provided, including both provider-facilitated telemedicine coverage as well as telehealth through MDLIVE, at the equivalent cost sharing associated with in-person visits.

As a reminder, OptumRx regularly evaluates and makes changes to the prescription drug formulary and programs that focus on safety and proper usage of certain prescriptions. If there are changes that may impact you, OptumRx will notify you prior to Jan. 1 with additional information.

The following table summarizes the contributions required for individuals in the SUBlue, SUOrange and SUPro plans.

2021 Health Plan: Monthly Contributions for COBRA Participants
SUBlue SUOrange SUPro
Individual Only $591.92 $575.62 $556.27
Individual + Spouse/ Domestic Partner $1,302.20 $1,266.34 $1,223.78
Individual + Child(ren) $1,142.40 $1,110.93 $1,073.59
Individual + Spouse/ Domestic Partner + Child(ren) $1,852.69 $1,801.66 $1,741.10

If you are enrolled in the University’s dental and vision coverage under COBRA and remain eligible, this is the year to make changes to your dental and vision coverage—a two-year commitment—unless you have a qualifying life event. The choices you make during this Open Enrollment will remain in effect through the end of 2022, unless your COBRA eligibility ends.

There are no changes to the plan designs for the University’s dental and vision benefits for calendar year 2021. Dental and vision benefit summaries are available online.

If you are enrolled in the SEBF dental/vision plan under COBRA, you may maintain or change your SEBF coverage. Contact SEBF at 855.835.9720 with any questions regarding the coverage options and contributions. SEBF dental and dental with optical COBRA rates are valid from July 1, 2020, through June 30, 2021.

The contributions for all COBRA continuation coverage options are available online.

The health plans, including SUBlue, SUOrange and SUPro, meet the coverage requirements of the Affordable Care Act. Given the variety of health insurance options available through the Marketplace of private insurers and the subsidies available, you may want to consider whether private insurance is a good option for you and your dependents.

More information about the Marketplace is available by phone at 800.318.2596 (federal) and 855.355.5777 (New York State). You should also compare the coverage and cost of these plans with those available to you through a spouse or domestic partner.

Visit the benefit notifications page to review important legal notices. These notifications are for your reference only. You are not required to take any action. However, if you have any questions on how these notifications may apply to your specific situation, please contact HR Shared Services at 315.443.4042 or hrservice@syr.edu.


Every effort has been made to ensure that the information contained within this website is accurate. However, benefits are governed by legal documents (which, in certain circumstances, may include insurance contracts). If there is any difference between the information on this website and the official documents, the official documents will control. As is the case with all of Syracuse University’s benefit plans, the University reserves the right to modify or terminate these benefits at any time.