Special Winter Vacation Reminder
As you start planning for the upcoming holiday season, don't forget that Penn grants faculty and staff a Special Winter Vacation between Christmas Day and New Year's Day each year. This year, the winter vacation days will be December 27 through 30, 2004.
Also keep in mind that some employees may be needed to report to work for part or all of this period so that departmental operations can continue; in these cases, the Special Winter Vacation can be rescheduled for some other time.
Have you thought about your retirement goals lately? As the tax year comes to an end, it's a good time to review how much you've contributed through Penn's retirement plans this year. You recently received a letter showing you the maximum amount you're allowed to contribute to the plans on a pre-tax basis. We encourage you to take full advantage of these plans. Pre-tax savings have less of an impact on your paycheck than you might think, since you don't pay federal income taxes on the money you're putting away until you actually take the money out of your account. The sooner you start saving, the better—and it's never too late to start!
Use Penn's online retirement system at www.hr.upenn.edu/retirement to manage your retirement accounts, or call the Retirement Call Center at 1-877-PENN-RET (1-877-736-6738), 8 a.m –5 p.m., Monday through Friday. For general information about Penn's retirement plans, visit the Human Resources website at www.hr.upenn.edu/benefits/retirement.
Health Benefits at Phoenixville Hospital
Since August 1, 2004, Phoenixville Hospital has no longer been part of the University of Pennsylvania Health System (UPHS) network. If you are enrolled in the UPHS Point of Service (POS) and PENNCare/Personal Choice medical plans, this change may affect you, as Phoenixville Hospital and the providers associated with it are no longer part of the top-tier networks (UPHS and PENNCare) under these two plans. However, the facility and providers are still part of the middle-tier networks (Keystone/AmeriHealth and Personal Choice) under these plans.
What this means is that if you are a participant in the UPHS POS or PENNCare/Personal Choice plans, and are using Phoenixville Hospital and its providers for your medical care, your benefits may now be covered at a slightly lower level. Note that this change is more significant for participants in the PENNCare/Personal Choice plan.
For more information on specific coverage levels, refer to the Medical Plan Comparison Chart on the Human Resources website (go to www.hr.upenn.edu, click on Medical, click on Key Features of Plans). If you have any questions, please contact your medical plan carrier as follows:
− UPHS POS: (215) 567-3550 or 800-253-3854
− PENNCare/Personal Choice: (215) 241-2990 or 800-841-1992
Please keep in mind that if you are enrolled in one of Penn's HMO plans (Keystone/AmeriHealth or Aetna) or Plan 100, there is no impact on your benefits.
—Division of Human Resources
Almanac, Vol. 51, No. 13, November 23, 2004