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September 13, 2012

Pitt Benefits

FitnessForLifeWomen’s Preventive Services Under Health Care Reform

The University has been offering preventive health care services at no cost through its medical coverage for many years. Through certain provisions of the Patient Protection Affordable Care Act (PPACA), additional benefits related to women’s preventive services must be made available for all new plan years starting after August 1, 2012. The University’s next plan year starts July 1, 2013, and the additional benefits would have to be made available at that time. However, a decision has been made to implement the changes as soon as administratively possible.

In addition to the wellness services currently provided at no cost, effective September 1, 2012, the following notable changes will take place:

  • Food and Drug Administration (FDA)-approved contraceptive methods, sterilization procedures, and patient education and counseling for all women with reproductive capacity will be provided at no cost. According to UPMC Health Plan, this means that generic birth control pills will be covered without a co-payment. As in the past, if a brand-name medication is selected when a generic is available, the member is still responsible for the brand-name co-payment and the difference in cost between the generic and brand-name medication. Even if a brand-name medication is medically necessary, members still are responsible for the brand-name co-payment.
  • Breast feeding support, supplies, and counseling are provided at no cost. According to the law, breast feeding pumps may be rented at no cost to the member.

To read more about the details of all preventive services that are required to be offered under health care reform, visit the web site

Flu Shot Clinics on Campus

It may not feel like it, but it is once again that time of year for flu shots. Arrangements have been made to conduct flu shot clinics throughout the University. The schedule is included in this newsletter. It may also be found online at:

Faculty and staff and their covered family members can receive the flu shot vaccination at no cost. Arrangements have been made with Falk Pharmacy, Student Health Service, and UPMC Health Plan to provide this service without the need to submit a claim. Regional campuses vary in how they handle the reimbursement of the claim. If you obtain a flu shot from a clinic that requires payment upfront, a reimbursement form will be mailed to you by UPMC Health plan; the form also may be found through a link on the Human Resources web site:

Listed below are some brief facts according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC):

The flu is a contagious respiratory illness caused by influenza viruses that infect the nose, throat, and lungs. It can cause mild to severe illness, and sometimes can lead to death. The best way to prevent the flu is by getting a flu shot each year.

Yearly flu vaccination should begin in September, or as soon as vaccine is available, and continue throughout the flu season which can last as late as May. This is because the timing and duration of flu seasons vary. While flu season can begin early as October, most of the time seasonal flu activity peaks in January, February or later.

Everyone 6 months and older should get a flu vaccine each year. This recommendation has been in place since February 24, 2010, when CDC’s advisory committee on immunization practices voted for “universal” flu vaccination in the United States to expand protection against the flu to more people. While everyone should get a flu vaccine each flu season, it’s especially important that certain people get vaccinated either because they are at high risk of having serious flu-related complications or because they live with or care for people at high risk for developing flu-related complications.

The seasonal flu vaccine protects against three influenza viruses that research indicates will be most common during the upcoming season. Three kinds of influenza viruses commonly circulate among people today: influenza B viruses; influenza A (H1N1) viruses, and influenza A (H3N2) viruses. Each year, one flu virus of each kind is used to produce the seasonal influenza vaccine.

The University is appreciative of the efforts of the Falk Pharmacy and the School of Pharmacy personnel for volunteering their time to conduct the clinics across campus! During the fall, Falk Pharmacy will also be conducting open clinics to administer flu shots.

Pittsburgh Campus Flu Shot Clinics

pgh flu

Regional Campus Flu Shot Clinics

flu region

Sports Physicals

Sometimes it is difficult to obtain an immediate appointment with a primary care office for a sports physical. The solution could be using one of UPMC’s Urgent Care facilities. They can provide a sports physical without an appointment. The cost is typically $20 but some offices have special offerings at certain times of the year.

There are numerous UPMC Urgent Care facilities available. The link below provides a listing of locations, office hours, and services available, including a coupon for the sports physicals:

Easy Access to UPMC Health Plan Web Site

Recently, University of Pittsburgh faculty and staff members were given single sign-on (SSO) access from to the UPMC MyHealth member portal. From, it is just a few simple clicks.

Follow the instructions below to access the UPMC MyHealth member portal from the main site:

Log on to at:

Click on the My Resources tab at the top of the page.

Scroll down the My Resources list and click on UPMC Health Plan.*

Click the MyHealth link on the top right section of the screen.

*It may take up to 20 seconds to get into the UPMC Health Plan web site.

The website contains a significant amount of information that is accessible to the general public as well as current members. The website can also help you obtain personal information, including:

•Medical claims history.

•Explanation of Benefits statements.

•History of prescription drug claims.

•Flexible spending account balances and transaction history.

•Self-service tools such as changing your PCP or requesting new ID cards.

MyHealth Central (which includes the health risk assessment, personalized health record, activity tracker, and access to online health coaching).

•Smart health care tools that include MyHealth Community discounts and tips on saving money.

You will also be able to chat online with a Member Services representative.

Staff Association Council Fall Brown Bag Lunch Series

The Staff Association Council, working in cooperation with the Benefits department, will conduct a series of brown bag meetings this fall and once again during the spring semester.  The first meeting will be on October 10 and will feature guest speakers from MetLife, the third-party administrator of the FMLA program, and a member of the Benefits department.  Future speakers will include representatives from TIAA-CREF, Vanguard, Davis Vision and United Concordia. Please save the dates and join SAC during this series of informational meetings.



Important Vendor Contact Information

Benefits Department

Office hours: 8 am-5 pm EST, 320 Craig Hall

412-624-8160 (Main Line) • 412-624-3485 (Fax)

Please visit our web site for FAQs, downloadable forms and other benefits information.


UPMC Health Plan



United Concordia 1-877-215-3616


Davis Vision 1-800-999-5431


TIAA-CREF 1-800-682-9139

Vanguard 1-800-523-1188

Flexible Spending Accounts







Faculty Records


UPMC HealthPlan

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