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From the CEO - August 2022

Dear AFSPA Member, 

As a new school year quickly approaches, I’d like to remind you to schedule an appointment for you and your child to get up to date on annual exams and recommended vaccines if you haven’t done so already.  

In addition, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is tracking an outbreak of the monkeypox virus that has spread across several countries, including the United States. Here are some tips and guidelines from CDC to help you understand the virus, how to prevent the spread, what to do if you have symptoms, and vaccination considerations.   

National Immunization Awareness Month 

August is National Immunization Awareness Month. This annual observance highlights the importance of receiving recommended vaccines throughout your life to protect you against serious diseases.  

The Foreign Service Benefit Plan (FSBP) covers annual physicals and well-child visits, as well as routine immunizations at 100% when received from an in-network provider or any overseas provider. You also can receive wellness rewards along the way. FSBP members 18+ years and older can receive $100 in wellness rewards after completing their annual exam and biometric screening. Learn more about FSBP’s wellness rewards program here 

International Overdose Awareness Day 

August 31 is International Overdose Awareness Day. It is the world’s largest annual campaign to end overdose, remember those who have died without stigma and acknowledge the grief of the family and friends left behind. According to provisional data from the CDC, of the more than 93,000 reported drug overdoses in 2020, more than three-quarters were attributed to opioids (pain relievers such as oxycodone, hydrocodone, percocet,  methadone and codeine). Each day, almost 7,000 people are treated in emergency departments for using these drugs in a manner other than as directed. Here are some tips to help stop opioid misuse.  

Update Your Address 

Summer is Transfer/Permanent Change of Station (PCS) season. As you prepare to leave one post for another, please take a few minutes to update your mailing address, telephone number, and email address in our system. Your employing agency/retirement office does not notify us when you change your contact information with them. You can update this information in the Mobile Enhanced AFSPA Member Portal, our mobile-friendly portal to connect with us from the palm of your hand.  

Stay Connected 

Last month, our AFSPA Talks podcast focused on overseas care: what and how care is available at Health Units, how to use the Foreign Service Benefit Plan to get the care you need while overseas, and how to access telehealth through vHealth outside the U.S. If you missed any of the conversation, you can catch up on all podcast episodes at afspa.org/podcast. Don’t forget to subscribe to our channel so you don’t miss any future episodes!  

This month, our podcast theme will be about our children and their health journey. We’ll be talking about FSBP’s benefits and coverages from birth, to vaccinations, to well-child visits, as well as mental & social health, so stay tuned in. On August 25th at 11:00am ET, we will be hosting an AFSPA Live Q&A Session with COO, Kyle Longton to answer any of your follow up questions about your child’s health care and FSBP. You can join the live Q&A session on our Facebook, LinkedIn, or YouTube pages.  

Lastly, look out for your 2022 AFSPA In Action summer newsletter coming soon to your mailbox. As always, thank you for your trust and for giving AFSPA the opportunity to serve you!  

To Your Health, 

Paula S. Jakub, RHU
CEO, AFSPA
Executive Director, Senior Living Foundation

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