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Aetna Informs California members of Continuing Medical Coverage Options

Aug 03, 2009


California members informed about continuing medical coverage after job loss

California requires Aetna to contact members who become eligible for state continuation if their coverage terminated between September 1, 2008 and December 31, 2009. On Friday, August 7, 2009, Aetna will mail an information packet to former employees of Small Group (2-50) customers explaining their potential option for continuing medical coverage under their former employers' group health plans. They will receive this packet the week of August 10.

The California Department of Managed Health Care (DMHC) is administering a state-specific notice model for insurance benefits carriers to use in connection with California's continuation coverage. Aetna is using this model to notify members.

This current mailing is for terminated members who Aetna identified as being terminated between September 1, 2008 and May 10, 2009.

Aetna will send these notices continuously to employees whose coverage terminates during the required period through the year-end deadline.

Special election period offers Californians a second chance

California also expanded the rights of involuntarily terminated employees under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA). As a result, individuals who were involuntarily terminated from employment between September 1, 2008 and March 15, 2009 and declined continuation coverage now have a second opportunity to elect coverage.

Under ARRA, employees may be eligible for a temporary premium reduction for up to nine months under a state continuation plan. They must review the materials Aetna mailed to confirm they meet the ARRA premium reduction criteria. Individuals who believe they are eligible have 60 days from the date they receive the notice (with an additional 10 days added for mailing purposes) to complete and return the Election Form/Application to their former employer.
 
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