IU Benefit Changes and Deadline Extensions Due to COVID-19

Below is a summary of the changes and enhancements to IU benefit plans related to the COVID-19 pandemic. We hope these changes make it easier for you and your family to manage your health and financial needs during this challenging time.

Note: As the pandemic and the government’s response evolves, additional changes may be made, so please check back often. For questions, contact IU Human Resources at or 812-856-1234.

For more information:

  • Visit the IU Human Resources COVID-19 response site for guidance and frequently asked questions on all other HR-related topics including pay and time off, telecommuting, hiring, returning to campus, and more. Visit the Health Care & Benefits FAQ for questions and answers related to the COVID-19 pandemic and related benefit changes.
  • Visit covid.iu.edu for campus information related to COVID-19, details on mitigation testing, tips to help prevent the spread, and to view IU’s COVID Dashboard.

Medical and Dental Coverage

The coverage listed in this section extends to active members and COBRA participants in the following IU-sponsored medical plans:

  • Employee plans (Anthem PPO $500 Deductible, Anthem PPO HDHP, IU Health HDHP)
  • Anthem Under 65 PPO HDHP (Retirees)
  • Anthem GA PPO Plan
  • Anthem IU Resident Plan (Medical and Optometry Residents)

Students and Fellowship Recipients should contact or 812-856-1234 for questions about coverage.

COVID-19 Vaccine

Effective Date: February 9, 2021
End Date: End of public health emergency (date currently unknown, but could change at any time)

In-network and out-of-network COVID-19 vaccines are covered at 100% under IU-sponsored medical plans. This means that all copays, deductibles, and out-of-pocket costs are waived. For specific questions about your coverage, contact the number of the back of your medical ID card.

COVID-19 Testing

Effective Date: March 17, 2020
End Date: End of public health emergency (date currently unknown, but could change at any time)

In-network testing for COVID-19 is covered at 100% under IU-sponsored medical plans. This means that all copays, deductibles, and out-of-pocket costs for the focused test to diagnose COVID-19 and the visit associated with the test are waived. For specific questions about your coverage, contact the number of the back of your medical ID card.

Information on voluntary asymptomatic and symptomatic testing through IU for students and employees is available on IU’s COVID-19 information site: Testing for COVID-19. If you do not have medical coverage, all Hoosiers, regardless of age, can access free COVID-19 testing. Visit the Indiana State Department of Health COVID-19 Testing website to find a testing location near you.

COVID-19 Treatment

Effective Date: April 1, 2020
End Date: End of public health emergency (date currently unknown, but could change at any time)

In-network treatment of a diagnosed case of COVID-19 is covered at 100% under IU-sponsored medical plans. This means that all copays, deductibles, and out-of-pocket costs for medically necessary services for the treatment of a COVID-19 diagnosis are waived, including physician services, hospitalization, and emergency services. For specific questions about your coverage, contact the number of the back of your medical ID card.

COVID-19 Telehealth Visits

Effective Date: March 17, 2020
End Date: End of public health emergency (date currently unknown, but could change at any time)

Telehealth visits for COVID-related medical issues are covered at 100% under IU-sponsored medical plans for online visits through your IU medical plan’s telehealth service, or telephonic (audio-only) visits through an in-network provider. Anthem plan members can access LiveHealth Online, and IU Health HDHP members can access IU Health Virtual Visits. Telehealth visits for non-COVID medical issues are covered with the standard copay/coinsurance and deductible amounts listed on the Telehealth web page.

Mid-Year Medical Plan Election Changes

Effective Date: March 1, 2020
End Date: December 31, 2021

For the 2021 plan year, eligible employees are permitted to make the following medical plan election changes on a prospective basis without providing proof of an IRS-qualifying Life Event:

  • Enroll yourself and eligible dependents (spouse and/or child(ren) up to age 26) in any IU medical plan if currently waived.
  • Add eligible dependents (i.e. spouse and/or child(ren) up to age 26) to existing IU medical plan coverage.
  • Terminate IU medical coverage for yourself and/or your dependents upon written attestation that you and/or your dependent(s) are enrolled, or will immediately enroll, in other medical coverage not sponsored by IU.

Changes under this provision are based on the date your request is received by IU Human Resources. Any changes to your premiums will be reflected on your first paycheck following the effective date of coverage.

Request a Mid-Year Election Change:

  • Complete the Special COVID-19 Election Change Form.
  • Attach digital or paper copies of any required supporting documentation to the form
  • Submit the completed form and documentation to IU Human Resources at or by mail to the address listed on the form.

Health Savings Account (HSA)

OTC Medication and Menstrual Care Products

Effective Date: January 1, 2020
End Date: N/A

Retroactively effective to January 1, 2020, menstrual care products and over-the-counter (OTC) medications without a doctor’s prescription are eligible for reimbursement through your HSA and TSB Healthcare Spending Account. View Nyhart’s Expense Eligibility Table for a comprehensive list of eligible expenses. 

Tax Saver Benefit (TSB) Spending Accounts

TSB Dependent Care Accounts – Grace Period and Claims Deadline Extension

Effective Date: February 4, 2021
End Date: Grace Period through December 31, 2021. Claims deadline is April 15, 2022.

For 2020 TSB Dependent Care Spending Accounts, the grace period has been extended to December 31, 2021, and the claims deadline has been extended to April 15, 2022. This means that participants with a 2020 TSB Dependent Care account can use those funds for eligible expenses incurred between January 1, 2020 (or the initial date of eligibility), and December 31, 2021, and have an additional 12 months to file claims. Any unused 2020 funds remaining after the claims deadline are still forfeited. The employee is responsible for ensuring that claims are filed under the appropriate plan year.

  • If you have a TSB Dependent Care account for 2020 and 2021, make sure you file online claims under your 2020 balance first. Once those funds are exhausted, file under your 2021 balance. If you file by paper, Nyhart will do this for you automatically.
  • If you have a TSB Dependent Care account for 2020 but not 2021, claims will be processed under your 2020 balance until those funds are exhausted, or until the claims filing deadline of April 15, 2022, whichever comes first.

For questions, contact Nyhart at 800-284-8412.

TSB Healthcare Accounts – Claims Deadline Extension

Effective Date: February 4, 2021
End Date: April 29, 2021

The claims deadline for 2020 TSB Healthcare accounts has been extended to April 29, 2021. This gives participants 60 additional days to submit claims using the standard methods (online or paper). For questions, contact Nyhart at 800-284-8412. Any unused funds above $550 remaining after the claims deadline are still forfeited.

Mid-Year TSB Plan Election Changes

Effective Date: January 1, 2021
End Date: December 31, 2021

For the 2021 plan year, eligible employees can begin, increase, or decrease contributions to a TSB Healthcare or Dependent Care Spending Account on a prospective basis without experiencing an IRS-qualifying life event. Changes under this provision will be based on the date your request is received by IU Human Resources. Any changes to your TSB contributions will be reflected on your first paycheck following the effective date of coverage.

Note: If you choose to decrease your contributions, you may only decrease your annual election to the value of YTD payroll deductions up to the date your change request is received by IU Human Resources. No refunds for contributions already taken will be given.

Request a Mid-Year Election Change:

  • Complete the Special COVID-19 Election Change Form.
  • Attach digital or paper copies of any required supporting documentation to the form.
  • Submit the completed form and documentation to IU Human Resources at or by mail to the address listed on the form.

TSB Healthcare Spending Account Carryover Increase

Effective Date: May 12, 2020
End Date: N/A

The IRS allowed an increase to the maximum carryover for the TSB Healthcare Account from $500 to $550 beginning with the 2020 plan year. No action is needed to take advantage of this change.

OTC Medication and Menstrual Care Products

Effective Date: January 1, 2020
End Date: N/A

Retroactively effective to January 1, 2020, menstrual care products and over-the-counter (OTC) medications without a doctor’s prescription are eligible for reimbursement through your HSA and TSB Healthcare Spending Account. View Nyhart’s Expense Eligibility Table for a comprehensive list of eligible expenses. No action is needed to take advantage of this change.


Expired Provisions

HIPAA Special Enrollments (Medical Plan enrollment)

Effective Date: May 4, 2020
End Date: March 31, 2021

The IRS has extended the deadline to enroll yourself and your dependents in an IU-sponsored medical plan due to a HIPAA special enrollment event. Under this extension, the calendar days within the period of March 1, 2020 through March 31, 2021, do not count in determining deadlines for HIPAA special enrollment events including:

  • The 30-day period to request a HIPAA special enrollment in medical coverage due to you losing other medical coverage or adding new dependents due to marriage, birth, or adoption.
  • The 60-day period to request a HIPAA special enrollment in medical coverage due to losing/gaining eligibility for Medicaid or CHIP

If you and/or your dependent(s) experienced a HIPAA special enrollment event on or after January 31, 2020 (or January 1, 2020 if the event was related to Medicaid or CHIP), and you did not enroll yourself and/or your dependents in an IU medical plan within the standard 30-day (or 60-day) timeframe, you now have additional time to do so. Changes can be made to MEDICAL coverage only.

EXAMPLE

June 1, 2020: Sue gives birth. Normally she would have until July 1, 2020, (30 days) to request enrollment for her child (or herself and her child) in IU-sponsored medical coverage.

This extension disregards the calendar days within the period of March 1, 2020 through March 31, 2021, when determining the 30-day HIPAA special enrollment period due to a birth. This means that Sue’s 30-day special enrollment period will not begin until the provision’s end date, March 31, 2021.

March 31, 2021: Sue’s HIPAA special enrollment period begins.

April 30, 2021: This is Sue’s last day to enroll her child (or herself and her child) in IU-sponsored medical coverage. The enrollment would be effective retroactively to June 1, 2020.

Except in the case of HIPAA Special Enrollment Events related to birth or adoption, coverage is applied on a prospective basis, meaning it is based on the date your request is received by IU Human Resources.

To request enrollment under this provision:

  1. Complete the Special COVID-19 Benefit Election Change Form.
  2. Make digital or paper copies of any required supporting documentation.
  3. Submit the completed form and documentation to IU Human Resources at or by mail to the address listed on the form.

Medical Claim, Appeal, and External Review

Effective Date: May 4, 2020
End Date: March 1, 2021

The IRS has extended the timeframe to file benefit claims, appeal an adverse benefit determination, or request an external review. Under this extension, the calendar days within the period of March 1, 2020, through March 1, 2021, do not count in determining the applicable deadlines to file a benefit claim, appeal an adverse benefit determination, or request for external review.

EXAMPLE

February 15, 2020: Marcus receives an adverse benefit determination related to a claim under his IU medical plan. Normally he would have until August 13, 2020 to file an appeal (180 days).

March 1, 2020: Marcus’ 180-day appeal period is “paused” as of this date.

This extension disregards the calendar days within the period of March 1, 2020 through March 1, 2021, when determining the deadline to file an appeal. This means that Marcus’ 180-day period to file an appeal is paused until the provision’s end date, March 1, 2021.

March 1, 2021: Marcus’ 180-day appeal period begins again.

August 14, 2021: This is Marcus’ deadline to file an appeal for this adverse benefit determination.

For questions about a medical claim, appeal, or external review, Anthem medical plan members can call Anthem at 844-736-0920, and IU Health HDHP medical plan members can call IU Health at 866-895-5975.

Retirement Plans CARES Act Provisions

Indiana University adopted the following provisions of the CARES Act for the IU Tax Deferred Account (TDA) and IU 457(b) supplemental retirement plans:

  • Expanded Loan Options: Borrow up to 100% of your account balance, not to exceed $100,000, across both plans (available through September 23, 2020)
  • Loan Payment Deferment: Defer any existing loan payments through December 31, 2020
  • Optional suspension of Required Minimum Distributions (RMDs) in 2020
  • Coronavirus-related Distribution (CRD): Take a distribution of up to $100,000 of your available account balance across both plans (available through December 31, 2020)

For CARES Act questions, contact Fidelity at 800-343-0860.

Indiana Public Retirement System (INPRS)

INPRS also implemented certain CARES Act provisions for all public employees in the Public Employees’ Retirement Fund (PERF) retirement plan. For CARES Act questions contact PERF at 844-GO-INPRS.

Cost-Share Waiver for Non-COVID Telehealth Visits

In-network telehealth visits for non-COVID medical issues were covered at 100% under IU-sponsored medical plans through September 30, 2020. Anthem plan members can access LiveHealth Online, and IU Health HDHP members can access IU Health Virtual Visits.

As of October 1, 2020, telehealth visits for non-COVID medical issues are covered with the standard copay/coinsurance and deductible amounts listed on the Telehealth web page.