Health Insurance

Our postdoctoral policy states that Individuals must hold appropriate health insurance coverage on appointment as a postdoctoral scholar, or as soon as possible thereafter. The conditions of appointment for scholars paid through the university must include payment/contribution toward the cost of health insurance equal to the cost of individual coverage from a designated plan offered through the Office of Postdoctoral Services (see description of the plans below). This benefit should be paid as an addition to the salary/stipend level, with no deduction being made from the salary/stipend paid to the postdoctoral scholar. This payment may be made as reimbursement to the scholar for his/her purchase of health insurance on another plan with appropriate documentation to support reimbursement and coverage.

Health insurance coverage for spouse and/or dependents is generally the responsibility of the postdoctoral scholar. Although each of the following plans has a family option, postdocs may find lower cost family coverage through one of the health exchanges offered in Virginia. Click here to learn about the health exchanges. You can receive assistance in applying for the plans in the health exchange through the Capital Area Health Network. Contact them at outreachaca@cahealthnet.org to schedule an appointment with a Certified Application Counselor (CAC). You may also contact Enroll Virginia at www.enroll-virginia.com or 1-888-392-5132 to learn more about the health insurance marketplace and receive assistance with the application and enrollment process.

Also, if your spouse is pregnant or you have children and meet certain income eligibility requirements, you may be eligible for health coverage through the state of Virginia. On this site, you will find information about Virginia's health insurance programs: FAMIS - the Children's Health Insurance Program and FAMIS MOMS - for pregnant women.
Eligibility information is here.

Health Insurance Plans

Application forms and brochures for the three health insurance plans

VCU offers three health insurance plans to VCU’s Postdoc’s through Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield. Dental coverage is included with all three plans. The insurance plans also include a $10,000 life insurance policy at no extra cost.  This life insurance policy will satisfy the medical evacuation and repatriation insurance requirement for J1 visa holders and will extend to dependents. Enclosed are the medical and dental packages with applications to be filled out and returned for submission.

  • Choose one of the three insurance plans offered, PPO – KeyCare 25, High Option HMO – HK 25 POS, or Primary (Low) HMO – HK Val Advantage
  • After choosing preferred plan, fill out the appropriate application form (please note separate applications for PPO and HMO plans) Group NameVCU Post Doctoral Fellows - Group Numbers:  PPO = 42170-000, High Option HMO = 0B6158-01, Primary (Low) HMO = 0B6158-03
  • Department Administrator must fill out the 2017 Insurance Premium Form (includes both dental and medical premiums)
  • Return the 4 completed forms (medical, dental, life insurance beneficiary form, and the 2017 Insurance Premium Form (includes both dental and medical premiums) to Andrekia Branch (Group Administrator) for processing - Campus mail (Box 980568) or fax (828-2051).

All forms must be completely filled out. Failure to complete forms will cause delays in your insurance coverage.

KeyCare 25 PPO (Group # 42170-000)
The Anthem KeyCare 25 PPO plan provides you with medical coverage through a network of preferred physicians and other health care practitioners. You may also access services from non-preferred physicians and other health care practitioners; however, your Out-Of-Pocket cost may be higher if you do so. The PPO plan has a $25 co-payment for regular office visits. Please also note that there is a $500 individual deductible ($1000 family deductible) and a 20% coinsurance on some services. Please visit www.anthem.com for more information, including the participating physician directory under “Find a Doctor”.

HK 25 POS - High Option HMO (Group # 0B6158-01) & HK Val Advantage – Primary (Low) HMO (Group # 0B6158-03)
The Anthem HealthKeepers HMO plans provide you with medical coverage through a network of participating physicians and other health care practitioners. Any one of the Anthem HealthKeepers network doctors specializing in family practice, general practice, internal medicine or for young members, pediatrics can coordinate your care and help you get the medical care you need. Each of your family members may choose a different PCP, and you can change your PCP.

Most of your medical care must be arranged and coordinated by your PCP. Your PCP will provide:

  • Office visits when you are ill
  • Preventive health care
  • Immunizations for children and adults
  • Health care education

Your PCP is also responsible for coordinating:

  • Advance authorization for hospital stays and outpatient surgery
  • Spinal manipulation and manual medical therapy services

Typically you won’t have to worry about claim forms or advance authorizations as your primary care physician takes care of them for you.

To access our list of network doctors, use the Find A Doctor link on www.anthem.com or call member services. The High Option HMO (HK 25 POS) plan has a $25 co-payment for regular office visits and a $50 co-payment for visits to a specialist. The Primary (Low) Option HMO (HK Val Advantage) plan has a $25 co-payment for regular office visits and a $50 co-payment for visits to a specialist. The LOW Option HMO also has a $500 individual deductible ($1000 family deductible) on facility services and a 30% coinsurance after the deductible on facility services. You do not need a referral to see a specialist in the Primary (Low) Option HMO (HK Val Advantage plan.

Dental Coverage
Your dental plan is through Dominion Dental Services, Inc (Group name: Virginia Commonwealth University; Group # 128505). Dominion Dental is offering two plans. If you enroll in the Access PPO plan, you may visit any dentist in the provider network. The second plan, the Select Plan 705x is a lower cost plan but it has orthodontic and major restorative care coverage. If you choose to enroll in the select plan, you must choose a participating Select Plan primary care dentist.

Access PPO
You’ll receive coverage for important dental services including*:

  • Routine exams and cleanings
  • Fillings
  • Dental x-rays
  • Care for toothaches
  • Tooth extractions
  • Oral surgery
  • Endodontic care (such as root canals)
  • Periodontic care(care of your gums)

*Please refer to your benefit summary for specific coverage and limitations

Select Plan 705X
You’ll receive coverage for important dental services including*:

  • Routine exams and cleanings
  • Fillings
  • Dental x-rays
  • Care for toothaches
  • Tooth extractions
  • Oral surgery
  • Endodontic care (such as root canals)
  • Periodontic care(care of your gums)
  • Major restorative care
  • Orthodontics

*Please refer to your benefit summary for specific coverage and limitations

To locate a dental provider, click here.

Other Important Information
It is VERY important that you choose doctors that participate in the plan you select. You take the risk of being responsible for a large portion of the medical bill, or possibly the entire bill, if you visit a doctor that does not participate in your chosen plan.

When adding dependents, (i.e. spouse, child and newborns, you have 31 days from qualifying event to enroll. After the 31 day period, you will have to wait until Open Enrollment to add dependents or change plans.
Please be sure to read all the information on the Benefit Summary sheets for all three plans. There is very important information pertinent to each plan on these sheets.

If there is an emergency and you need immediate medical attention, visit the nearest hospital. If you are enrolled in an HMO Plan, and you experience such an emergency, you need to notify your PCP as soon as possible. Someone from the practice is “on call” 24 hrs a day, 365 days a year and will call you back. It is good practice to be aware of participating medical facilities near your home and job. There is a list of facilities on the website for each plan.

Please read the information given to you carefully so that you understand what each plan offers. If you have questions, contact:

  • Andrekia Branch
  • Coordinator, Office of Postdoctoral Services
  • Office of the Vice President for Research and Innovation
  • Phone number: 827-6036
  • Fax number: 828-2051
  • Email: aebranch@vcu.edu
  • BioTech I Research Park Building
  • 800 East Leigh Street
  • Suite 3000, Room 3046
  • or visit the Anthem website at www.anthem.com or the Dominion Dental website at www.dominiondental.com