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Health Benefits Open Season

The 2005 Federal Employees Health Benefits (FEHB) open season is scheduled for November 14 through December 13, 2005. Many open season changes may be made via self-service on PostalEASE. During this open season, eligible employees may make any one, or a combination, of the following changes:

• Enroll if not enrolled.

• Change from one plan to another plan.

• Change from one option to another option.

• Change from Self Only to Self and Family.

• Change from Self and Family to Self Only.

• Cancel enrollment.

• Change from pre-tax to post-tax payment of health insurance premiums, or vice versa.

Enrollment changes and new enrollments made during the 2005 open season will be effective January 7, 2006 (Pay Period 02-06).

Distribution of Open Season Materials


Before the start of open season, the 2006 Guides to Federal Employees Health Benefits (FEHB) Plans for (1) career employees (RI 70-2); (2) Postal Inspection Service and Office of Inspector General (OIG) employees (RI 70-2IN); and (3) Certain Temporary (Noncareer) employees (RI 70-8PS) will be mailed from the national level to each employee's address of record. Each 2006 guide includes:

• An overview of FEHB program eligibility requirements and election choices during open season.

• A comparison of biweekly premium costs of participating plans.

• An explanation of the pre-tax payment feature, including a current listing of qualified life status changes.

• Enrollee survey results provided by the individual health plans.

• Information about accreditation of the key systems and processes that managed care organizations use.


To assist in publicizing this FEHB open season, all installations must post the open season notice provided on page 2 of this Postal Bulletin through December 13, 2005, on bulletin boards.

Compensation will make an automatic distribution of brochures indicated below to the same offices that receive Thrift Savings Plan (TSP) and Flexible Spending Account (FSA) materials. This distribution is to all customer service district offices, processing and distribution centers, airport mail centers, bulk mail centers, remote encoding centers, the Office of the Inspector General, selected Postal Inspection Service divisions, and selected Headquarters field units.

Personnel offices will receive through automatic distribution:

• RI 70-2, 2006 Guide to FEHB Plans (postal career employees) - postal stocking number (PSN) 7690-03-000-3774.

• RI 70-2IN, 2006 Guide to FEHB Plans (USPS Inspectors and Office of Inspector General employees).

• RI 70-5, 2006 Guide to FEHB Plans (temporary continuation of coverage and former spouses) - PSN 7690-03-000-3772.

• Most fee-for-service plan brochures.

The Rural Carrier Benefit Plan will distribute automatically to district and area Human Resources offices (not to the TSP/FSA installation distribution list). Offices may also requisition additional copies from the Material Distribution Center (MDC):

• RI 72-5, Rural Carriers Benefit Plan (individual plan brochure for the rural carriers closed enrollment fee- for-service plan) - PSN 7690-03-000-3809.

Personnel offices must requisition the following item from the MDC:

• RI 70-8PS, 2006 Guide to FEHB Plans (Certain Temporary/Noncareer employees) - PSN 7690-03- 000-3754.

These forms are available on the Postal ServiceTM PolicyNet Web site:

• PS Form 8201, Pre-Tax Health Insurance Premium Waiver/Restoration Form for Career Employees.

• PS Form 8202, Pre-Tax Health Insurance Premium Election/Waiver Form for Noncareer Employees.

To find them, go to; under "Essential Links," click on Forms.

Order directly from plan sponsors:

• Brochures for health maintenance organizations (HMOs) and Point of Service Plans (POSs).

Additional Information

Publication 12, Health Benefits Open Season Administrative and Processing Information (November 2004), addresses FEHB open season administrative issues in more detail than the various guides. It contains information on the following:

• Open season materials, including details of when and how to requisition a residual supply of materials.

• Eligibility requirements for coverage.

• A list of FEHB health plan withdrawals and other significant changes.

• Comprehensive medical plan (HMO) contact information.

• Personnel processing information.

• Open season publicity material.

Publication 12 is available on the Postal Service PolicyNet Web site:

• Go to

• Under "Essential Links" in the left-hand column, click on References.

• Under "References" in the right-hand column, under "Policies," click on PolicyNet.

• Click on PUBs.

(The direct URL for the Postal Service PolicyNet Web site is

— Compensation,
Employee Resource Management, 10-13-05