2017 Plan & Rate Changes

Pending approval by the OU Board of Regents on October 25, 2016.


Each year university administration, Human Resources, and the Employee Benefits Committee review the university’s insurance plans and premium rates to ensure that employees receive competitive, high quality benefits at the best possible rate for the upcoming year.  Review the Insurance Programs for more information. 
  • Read this 2017 Benefits Enrollment flyer summarizing key enrollment information.
  • Spousal Insurance Coverage Reminder: As in previous years, all spouses recognized by law are eligible for university benefits. For questions about eligibility or coverage, contact Human Resources.

Medical Insurance

Beginning January 1, Cigna will replace BlueCross as the administrator of the university’s medical insurance plans. 
  • Enrollment Action Required: All employees must make a medical and dental insurance selection during the enrollment period. Enrollments cannot be transferred from 2016. Employees who do not select a plan will be automatically enrolled in the PPO Plan with Employee Only coverage and will automatically waive dental insurance. 
  • PPO Plan & HSA Plan - The provider network has been simplified to one network instead of two. Neither plan requires the selection of a primary care physician. Both plans have deductible and co-insurance amounts and the plans remain very similar to those available in 2016.
  • HMO Plan: As announced in 2015, the HMO plan will no longer be available starting in 2017. 
  • Rates: Rates for dependent coverage will decrease for all contribution tiers and most rates for Employee Only medical insurance coverage will increase less than $20/month. 
  • Tobacco-Use Surcharge: As announced in 2015, tobacco-using employees will pay a $20 per month surcharge for medical insurance. To encourage healthy behaviors and avoid the surcharge, tobacco-free employees must TAKE ACTION to complete the Tobacco-Use Designation in Employee Self-Service. Recommended: Do this before Oct. 28 for the best enrollment experience.

Dental Insurance

Employees will now pay $5 of their monthly dental insurance premium. The plans remain the same. Dental insurance can be waived during the online enrollment process, if desired. 

Life Insurance

Beginning January 1, 2017, Lincoln Financial Group will replace Standard Insurance as the administrator of OU's life insurance plans. The plans and rates will remain the same.

If a participant previously elected Option 2 (50 percent of pay), and they want to increase the coverage and elect Option 1 (66 2/3 percent of pay) during annual enrollment, a one-year pre-existing condition will apply to the increased benefit amount. If the individual previously elected no coverage during annual enrollment, he or she may only elect Option 2, and the one-year pre-existing condition will apply.

Note:  If you were previously approved for coverage over $450k with The Standard, LFG will take over the existing amount without requiring health questions on an evidence of insurability (EOI) form.

Accident Protection

Lincoln Financial is now the provider for accident protection (AD&D). The rates and plans remain the same.

Long Term Disability

Beginning January 1, 2017, Lincoln Financial Group (LFG) will replace Standard Insurance as the administrator of OU's long term disability plans. The plans and rates will remain the same.

With this change LFG is offering a one-time guarantee issue open enrollment for coverage effective January 1, 2017. This means you can enroll in the LTD plan of your choice without answering health questions to be approved for coverage. This is a onetime opportunity-should you decide not to enroll this year, you will have to answer health questions and be approved for coverage during subsequent open enrollment periods.