Happy New Year! I want to welcome our new enrollees who chose the Foreign Service Benefit Plan (FSBP) during Open Season. We are excited to have you join our community of more than
3,000 loyal members who trust us with their health care needs. As we move forward after a difficult 2020, we want to keep you informed of the new developments at the American Foreign Service Protective Association (AFSPA).
By now, returning members have received their 2021 Open Season Materials. Read the documents carefully and review your full Plan Brochure. Be sure to also check our to see the ways in which FSBP can help you prioritize your health and medical care during COVID-19. We encourage you to take full advantage of the new services available to you in 2021.
January is Cervical Health Awareness Month! It is a chance to raise awareness about how members can protect themselves from HPV (human papillomavirus) and cervical cancer. FSBP understands the importance of regular wellness checks. HPV vaccines and cervical cancer screenings (pap smears) are covered at 100 percent for in-network and overseas providers under the Plan.
NEW FOR 2021 – You also can earn a $25 Wellness Reward for your cervical cancer screening by participating in FSBP’s Simple Steps to Living Well Together program. This is just one of the enhancements in our Wellness Program that offers more opportunities for all members to earn Healthy Action rewards. To learn more about this and other reward opportunities through the Simple Steps to Living Well Together program, you can view the 2021 FSBP Brochure or
January 24-30 is Healthy Weight Week, a time to celebrate healthy, diet-free living habits that last a lifetime and prevent eating and weight problems. If you’ve struggled with maintaining diet or weight-related New Year’s resolutions in the past, you may want to consider taking baby steps and setting more realistic goals to start. Choosing a more manageable resolution can make a huge difference when it comes to sticking to it. FSBP offers the below programs to help get you on track:
The Health Coaching Program allows you to work one-on-one with a Health Coach who offers guidance, support, and resources to help you realize your optimal health. This program can count as a general Healthy Action for the Plan’s Simple Steps program, which means you are eligible to earn a $75 Wellness Reward when you participate. You must first complete a Health Risk Assessment and Biometric Screening to earn the reward.
The Mediterranean Wellness Program is an interactive, online, eight-week program that assists you in maintaining a desirable weight and keeping healthy by eating nutritious and hearty food. You will have access to an 80-page support manual, as well as access to your own Registered Dietician. Completion of this program can earn you a $75 condition-specific Healthy Action Incentive in the Simple Steps program.
To enroll in either of these programs, view our More Wellness Programs web page. You also can take advantage of a number of discounts on fitness gear and support programs available through the Plan. Simply log in to the Aetna secure member website, click on “Stay Healthy” and then select “Discounts.” No matter what your New Year’s resolutions are for this year, FSBP can help you get started on your health journey while taking care of yourself.
Just a reminder that for security and expedience reasons, we recently eliminated the option to use the last four digits of your social security number when submitting claims online via the AFSPA Member Portal. This change was effective January 1, 2021. Moving forward, please use your “W” member ID when submitting claims.
The unprecedented circumstances of 2020 brought about some modifications to FSBP benefits so that our members could have access to remote health care. As we move into 2021, FSBP will continue to cover Telehealth visits through Teladoc and vHealth vendors at 100 percent. You can view sections 5(a) and 5(e) of the 2021 FSBP Brochure for more information on these services.
Telemedicine visits, which are virtual visits with an established provider or PCP, were covered last year because of an emergency lift on normal Plan restrictions. While we received OPM’s permission to continue offering virtual visits in 2021, these visits now will be covered like in-person office visits subject to the calendar year deductible and covered at 90 percent for in-network and overseas providers and 70 percent of the Plan allowance for out-of-network providers. They no longer will be covered at 100 percent for 2021.
Another notable benefit change for the new year is the increase in the visit limit for chiropractic, acupuncture, and massage therapy services to 50 visits per person, per calendar year. You can find detailed information on coverage for these services in the 2021 FSBP Brochure Section 5(a) under Chiropractic and Alternative treatments.
I personally want to wish you all a safe and healthy New Year. As always, thank you for your continued trust and loyalty. We look forward to serving you in 2021.
To Your Health,
Paula S. Jakub, RHU
Executive Director, Senior Living Foundation