October 15, 2013
Purdue Profiles: Eva Nodine
Eva Nodine, director of benefits in Human Resources. (Purdue University photo/Mark Simons)
Helping Purdue's employees understand the University's 2014 medical benefits and guiding them toward the most advantageous decisions are Eva Nodine's top priorities.
As director of benefits in Human Resources, Nodine is an expert on the medical plan options available for next year. She has spent the last several months providing information to the University's employees ahead of open enrollment, which lasts Oct. 28 through 6 p.m. on Nov. 15.
What are the most important things employees should understand about next year's medical benefits?
It's important that employees make informed decisions. All of the plans we are offering for next year are new -- in other words, employees can't compare plans on a year-over-year basis because it would be like comparing apples and oranges.
All three of our plans for next year are variations of what we call the Purdue Health Plan. The Purdue Health Plan Plus HSA 2 is very affordable -- for example, there are no premiums when only the employee is covered, but it has a higher deductible. It also includes a health savings account. The Purdue Health Plan Plus HSA 1 is a middle-of-the-road option that offers low premiums, a medium deductible and a health savings account. The third option, simply called the Purdue Health Plan, has higher premiums but lower deductibles.
We really encourage people to take time to learn about all the options, so they can go with the plan that makes the most sense for themselves and their families.
How is Human Resources helping employees learn about their options?
In addition to presentations we've been giving across campus to thousands of employees, we are offering a tool to help employees compare and contrast each plan and determine which is best for them. This comparison tool, called Truven Informed Enrollment, is available by logging into the Purdue Employee Portal at www.purdue.edu/employeeportal. Employees log in using their Purdue career account and password, and then they should click the EBenefits link. A link to Truven is on the right side of the EBenefits home page under the "Benefit Tools" section.
Using the tool, employees view the total of a year's worth of their recent claims. Then, the tool will tell them how much those claims would cost under each plan available next year. The tool also allows employees to input additional medical charges they expect to have next year, such as those associated with giving birth, having major surgery, or the recent development of a chronic illness. This tool is simple to use. Using it requires just about 10 very simple steps and five to 10 minutes total, so everyone can easily use it to help make their decision.
What are some benefits afforded under all of next year's medical plans?
It's important to note that preventive health care is no charge to employees under all the plans, including yearly exams for adults, all checkups for children, preventive colonoscopies, preventive mammograms and so on. Also, included at no charge to the employees for 2014 are all preventive generic prescriptions.
The Center for Healthy Living also is available to all benefits-eligible Purdue employees and their dependents covered on a Purdue medical plan. Even Purdue employees who are not covered on a Purdue health plan can go to the center and have their services billed to their own insurance. For employees and their dependents who are on a Purdue plan, most non-preventive services at the center will cost $10 or $45 in 2014, depending on which plan they choose.
In addition to no charge for preventive health care, the Center for Healthy Living offers medication therapy management, tobacco cessation programs, and the services of a registered dietitian and health coaches. Those services are no charge for all benefits-eligible employees and any dependents covered on Purdue health care plans.
What do you find most rewarding about helping Purdue's employees learn about their benefits?
In addition to medical benefits, my department handles retirement benefits, life insurance, short- and long-term disability insurance, worker's compensation, and all of Purdue's voluntary benefits, including dental insurance and accident insurance. So my days are always busy and challenging -- and that keeps me very happy.
I love my job because, while our benefits are changing, Purdue truly cares about our employees. We want to help them find the best ways to take advantage of their benefits, and you don't always find that attitude in other work settings. When we're educating employees about their benefits, oftentimes we'll see a light bulb go off in their heads -- that's when they realize how their benefits can truly improve their lives.
For me, that's what it's all about -- helping people make informed choices that will help them and their families stay happy and healthy.Writer: Amanda Hamon, 49-61325, firstname.lastname@example.org