Academic Graduate Student Employee Insurance Options

This information only applies to benefits eligible academic graduate student (AGS) employees. Learn more about AGS employee insurance options, enrollment, and health plans by carefully reviewing the information provided on this web page.

Benefits Eligible Employment

An AGS employee is benefits eligible if expected to work in one or a combination of the following AGS job titles for at least 20 scheduled weekly hours (SWH) and for at least 4.5 months (135 calendar days).

  • G0045 Assistant Instructor
  • G0061 Teaching Assistant (SI)
  • G0062 Teaching Assistant-NSC
  • G0063 Teaching Assistant
  • G0064 Graduate Tutor
  • G0065 Academic Assistant
  • G0071 Graduate Assistant
  • G0090 Graduate Research Assistant

The SWH for AGS employees determines their part-time or full-time status for insurance purposes.

  • Part-time AGS employees are scheduled for 20-29 total SWH, with at least 20 SWH in AGS job titles.
  • Full-time AGS employees are scheduled for 30+ total SWH, with at least 20 SWH in AGS job titles.
    • Certain benefits eligible AGS employees may have less than 30 SWH and still be considered full-time for insurance purposes.If they worked at least 1,560 hours in a previous 12-month Affordable Care Act (ACA) measurement period, they will qualify as ACA full-time for a future 12-month ACA stability period.

Insurance Funding

AcademicBlue Student Health Insurance Plan (SHIP)

UT provides all eligible AGS employees with 100% premium support for AcademicBlue SHIP, the student health insurance plan.  UT Austin also provides 50% premium support for dependent coverage, with AGS employees paying the remaining 50% of their dependent premiums directly to Academic Health Plans, the plan administrator, on a monthly basis.

September 1, 2021 –
August 31, 2022 Plan Year

Monthly Premium Support

Monthly AGS Employee Premium Amount

Subscriber Only $266.00 $0.00
Subscriber + Spouse $399.00 $133.00
Subscriber + Child(ren) $479.00 $213.00
Subscriber + Family $612.00 $346.00

UT Select

UT provides premium sharing for all employees based upon scheduled weekly hours (SWH) for UT Select, the employee health plan. 

  • Part-time (20-29 SWH) AGS employees will receive 50% premium sharing for UT Select and 25% premium sharing for dependent coverage.
  • Full-time (30+ SWH) AGS employees will receive 100% premium sharing for UT Select and 50% premium sharing for dependent coverage.

AGS employees with UT Select will pay their premium costs for part-time and/or dependent coverage through monthly or semi-monthly payroll deduction.

UT Select & AcademicBlue SHIP Premium Comparison

UT Select and AcademicBlue SHIP rates displayed below are for the September 1, 2021 - August 31, 2022 plan year. AcademicBlue SHIP rates only apply to AGS employees. 

 

UT Select

Academic Blue

Level of Coverage Monthly Premium for Part-time Employees Monthly Premium for Full-time Employees Monthly Premium for All AGS Employees
Subscriber Only $314.02 $0.00 $0.00
Subscriber + Spouse $749.04 $270.42 $133.00
Subscriber + Child(ren) $702.16 $282.82 $213.00
Subscriber + Family $1,117.46 $532.52 $346.00

Other Employee Group Insurance Plan Funding

Regardless of health plan enrollment, AGS employees may elect other plans available in the employee group insurance program for themselves and for some plans, their eligible dependents.  These plans include:

Premiums for these plans are paid through monthly or semi-monthly payroll deduction.

Premium Sharing Credit

An AGS employee may receive dental, vision and AD&D coverage at no premium cost if they decline UT Select and enroll in another health plan, including AcademicBlue SHIP.  Up to half of the eligible UT Select premium sharing dollars are available to pay the dental, vision and AD&D premiums for AGS employees and their dependents.

Premium sharing credit amounts displayed below are for the September 1, 2021 - August 31, 2022 plan year.

Employment Status

Monthly Premium Sharing Credit Available

Part-time (20-29 SWH) $157.02
Full-time (30+ SWH) $314.03

Insurance Enrollment

AGS Employees may need to use multiple insurance systems, identified below.

System

Event

Applicable Plans

Academic Health Plans enrollment system Elect coverage for self, if full-time, or dependents AcademicBlue SHIP
Academic Health Plans waiver system Waive coverage for self, if part-time AcademicBlue SHIP
Academic Health Plans student portal View coverage and more AcademicBlue SHIP
Blue Access for Members (BAM) BlueCross Blue Shield of Texas system to print or download temporary ID card, view health coverage, view benefits and claims, and more (separate registrations required for each health plan)

AcademicBlue SHIP

UT Select

My UT Benefits Enrollment system – elect, decline or view coverage

UT Select

Premium Sharing Credit

Dental

Vision

Voluntary Term Life

Voluntary AD&D

Disability

UT FLEX

Receipt of the emails below will indicate confirmation of health plan enrollment or an enrollment opportunity, and system access. AGS employees will generally receive emails from both the Academic Health Plans and My UT Benefits systems, although the timing may differ.

Part-time AGS Employees

To From Subject System Access

New part-time AGS employees automatically enrolled

Continuing AGS employees changing to part-time status with automatic enrollment

Academic HealthPlans (do-not-reply@ahpcare.com) Welcome to AcademicBlue Student Health Insurance Plan (SHIP) Academic Health Plans enrollment system

Academic Health Plans waiver system

New part-time AGS employees with opportunity to enroll hrsc@austin.utexas.edu Enrollment Opportunity for UT Select Employee Health Insurance Plan, Dental, Vision & Other Plans My UT Benefits
Continuing AGS employees changing to part-time status with opportunity to enroll hrsc@austin.utexas.edu Enrollment Opportunity (Full-time to Part-time Employment Status) – Action May be Required My UT Benefits

Full-time AGS Employees

To From Subject System Access

New full-time AGS employees with opportunity to enroll

Continuing AGS employees changing to full-time status with opportunity to enroll

Academic HealthPlans (do-not-reply@ahpcare.com) Enrollment Opportunity for AcademicBlue Student Health Insurance Plan (SHIP) Academic Health Plans enrollment system

 

New full-time AGS employees automatically enrolled hrsc@austin.utexas.edu Welcome to the UT Select Employee Health Insurance Plan My UT Benefits
Continuing AGS employees changing to full-time status with automatic enrollment hrsc@austin.utexas.edu Welcome to UT Select (Part-time to Full-time Employment Change) - Action May be Required My UT Benefits

Enrollment Prerequisites for Newly Eligible Employees

Benefits eligibility is not determined until the employing college, school, or unit completes the hire process and AGS employees complete the following onboarding tasks in Workday.  Insurance enrollment can’t occur until these tasks are completed.  Some of these tasks may not be completed prior to the first work day.

  • Edit Government IDs, if SSN was not already provided for I-9 or background check
  • Enter Personal Information
  • Change Contact Information
  • Benefits Questionnaire

Review the New Student Employee Checklist for more information about all required onboarding tasks.

Automatic Enrollment

Effective September 1, 2021:

  • All part-time (20-29 SWH) AGS employees will be automatically enrolled in AcademicBlue SHIP.
    • Continuing part-time employees enrolled in UT Select will also automatically have UT Select coverage canceled effective August 31, 2021
    • Continuing part-time AGS employees who previously waived UT Select will be automatically enrolled in AcademicBlue SHIP and must waive coverage if not needed
  • New full-time (30+ SWH) AGS employees will be automatically enrolled in UT Select.
    • Continuing full-time AGS employees already enrolled in UT Select will remain enrolled in UT Select
    • Continuing full-time AGS employees who previously waived UT Select will continue to have no UT health coverage, unless they take action

Continuing AGS employees should review Frequently Asked Questions for more information about their enrollment options.

Initial Enrollment

New AGS employees have 31 calendar days from the hire date to make additional insurance elections, including:

  • waiving automatic coverage (AcademicBlue SHIP or UT Select)
  • enrolling in the other UT health plan option
  • adding dependents
  • adding other plans, such as dental, vision or AD&D

The initial enrollment period is defined below, based on the standard academic employment hire dates.

Semester

Standard Academic Employment Hire Dates

Initial Enrollment Period for All Plans

Health Insurance Effective Date for Subscriber & Dependents

Fall September 1 September 1 –
October 1
September 1
Spring January 16 January 16 –
February 15
Academic Blue:  January 1

 

UT Select:  January 16

Summer June 1 June 1 – July 1 June 1

If your benefits eligible employment starts on a different date, add 31 calendar days to your hire date, counting your hire date as day one.

Open/Annual Enrollment

This is an annual opportunity for continuing AGS employees to make changes to their benefit elections that become effective for the next plan year. 

New Fall 2021 AGS employees won’t have an open enrollment opportunity until 2022.

Starting in Summer 2022, continuing AGS employees enrolled in AcademicBlue SHIP must take the following actions each year during the AcademicBlue SHIP open enrollment period.

  • Part-time AGS employees who previously waived coverage must waive coverage again, otherwise they will be automatically enrolled in AcademicBlue SHIP effective September 1.
  • Full-time AGS employees who previously enrolled in AcademicBlue SHIP and want to waive coverage must take action to waive. 
  • AGS employees who previously enrolled dependents in coverage must re-enroll dependents in AcademicBlue SHIP coverage, otherwise dependents will have no coverage effective September 1.

Plan

Open/Annual Enrollment Period

Plan Year

AcademicBlue SHIP September 1 – October 1 September 1 –
August 31
UT Select and/or other employee group plans July 15 – July 31 September 1 –
August 31

Mid-Year Change of Status Enrollment

AGS employees who experience a mid-year employment status change or family status change may be able to make a change to their insurance elections within 31 calendar days of the qualifying event date.  If this deadline is missed, AGS employees will need to wait until the next open enrollment period to make changes. 

Plan

Events to Add Coverage

Events to Cancel Coverage

Additional Information

AcademicBlue SHIP

Marriage, birth, adoption, loss of other coverage, dependents arrival in the U.S.

Only permitted for divorce, death, entry into Armed Forces, or enrollment into UT Select; may not cancel due to gaining other coverage

AcademicBlue SHIP Enrollment

AcademicBlue SHIP Cancellation

AcademicBlue SHIP Plan Brochure (review Qualifying Events)

UT Select and/or other employee group plans

Review Change of Status for details

Review Change of Status for details

UT System Change of Status

Part-time to Full-time Employment Change

AcademicBlue SHIP

If enrolled in AcademicBlue SHIP at the time of the part-time to full-time change, AGS employees will be automatically enrolled in UT Select, and their Premium Sharing Credit plan enrollment will be cancelled.  They have the option to re-elect AcademicBlue SHIP, decline UT Select, and re-elect the Premium Sharing Credit plan within 31 days of the date of the change to full-time. 

UT Select

If enrolled in UT Select at the time of the part-time to full-time change, UT Select coverage will continue.  If AGS employees had covered dependents, they must re-elect their UT Select dependent coverage or have the option to enroll in AcademicBlue SHIP and elect the Premium Sharing Credit plan within 31 days of the date of the change to full-time.

Full-time to Part-time Employment Change

AcademicBlue SHIP

If enrolled in AcademicBlue SHIP at the time of the full-time to part time change, AGS employees will remain enrolled in AcademicBlue SHIP, although their Premium Sharing Credit plan enrollment will be cancelled.  AGS employees will need to re-elect the Premium Sharing Credit plan or have the option to enroll in UT Select and could then waive AcademicBlue SHIP within 31 calendar days of the change to part-time.

UT Select

If enrolled in UT Select at the time of the full-time to part-time change,  UT Select coverage will be canceled, and AGS employees will be automatically enrolled in AcademicBlue SHIP.  AGS employee could remain in AcademicBlue SHIP and elect the Premium Sharing Credit plan, or have the option to waive AcademicBlue SHIP and re-enroll in UT Select within 31 calendar days of the change to part-time.

Health Insurance Coverage

Employees are responsible for understanding plan benefits and determining which plan works best for them, considering premium costs, coverage, and the cost of care.

AcademicBlue SHIP

AcademicBlue SHIP is designed and priced for students, so premiums are lower than UT Select, and for services at University Health Services, benefits are paid at 100% of the allowable amount for covered expenses. 

Learn more about the plan by reviewing the documents below, along with other resources available on the AcademicBlue SHIP website.

UT Select

Learn more about the plan by reviewing the documents below, along with other resources available on the UT System Office of Employee Benefits and UT Select websites.

AcademicBlue SHIP & UT Select Plan Comparison

Review the Comparison Chart for a side-by-side comparison of the cost of care and premium costs.  The plan year for both plans is September 1 – August 31.

Key Similarities

  • BlueChoice PPO Nationwide Network
  • BlueCross BlueShield Global Core (formerly BlueCard Worldwide)
  • Gold-level Plan Rating with $350 Individual Deductible and 20% Member Coinsurance
  • Copayments for Office Visits and Urgent Care
  • Prescription Drug Benefits
  • Behavioral Health Care
  • MDLive Virtual Visits
  • 24/7 Nurseline
  • Blue Access for Members (BAM) Account Access
  • Out-of-Network Benefits
  • No Pre-existing Condition Limitation
  • No Annual or Lifetime Maximum Benefit
  • Annual Out-of-Pocket Maximum

Key Differences

These coverage differences assume AGS employees are using network providers.

Coverage

AcademicBlue SHIP

UT Select

Plan Type

Individual Plan (Fully-Insured)

Employer Group Plan (Self-Insured)

University Health Services

Copayment, coinsurance and deductible waived and benefits paid at 100% of allowable amount of covered expenses

Reduced $10 copayment for office visits and reduced $25 copayment for procedures as part of UT Health Network

Copayments

Review the Comparison Chart for details

Reduced when using the UT Health Network; review the Comparison Chart for details

Diagnostic Lab and X-Ray

$350 individual deductible and 20% member coinsurance apply

Included in Office Visit Copayment

Coinsurance Maximum (coinsurance applies after $350 individual/$1,050 family deductible is met)

Not applicable; coinsurance is paid until annual out-of-pocket maximum is met

$2,150 Individual/$6,450 Family

Annual Out-of-Pocket Maximum

$6,600 Individual/$12,700 Family

$8,550 Individual/$17,100 Family

Out-of-Area Benefits

Not applicable; network or out-of-network benefits apply regardless of primary U.S. mail address in Workday

Applies when primary U.S mail address in Workday is outside of Texas, New Mexico or Washington, D.C.

Pharmacy Provider

Prime Therapeutics

Prescription Drug List; Contraceptive Drug List

Express Scripts

Prescription Drug List

Prescription Drug Deductible

Not applicable; copayments apply

$100 per person per plan year, then copayments

Prescription Specialty Drugs 20% coinsurance Variable based upon drug

If you are enrolled in AcademicBlue SHIP for the 2021-2022 plan year and experience increased out-of-pocket costs compared to UT Select, you may be eligible to apply for the Graduate School's Health Care Assistance Fund.

Loss of Eligibility & Continuation of Coverage

AcademicBlue SHIP

AGS employees lose premium support eligibility when benefits eligible employment ends.  AcademicBlue SHIP coverage will be canceled at the end of the month of the benefits eligible employment termination date.  If still eligible for AcademicBlue SHIP due to their student status, these students may enroll in AcademicBlue SHIP in the Academic Health Plans voluntary student enrollment system and pay Academic Health Plans directly for their coverage.  Enrollment in voluntary student coverage must be completed within 31 days of the cancellation date.

If no longer eligible for AcademicBlue SHIP as a student, these individuals may enroll in three-month continuation coverage in the Academic Health Plans enrollment system and pay Academic Health Plans directly for their coverage.  Enrollment in continuation coverage must be completed within 31 days of the cancellation date.

UT Select

AGS employees lose eligibility for UT Select and other employee group insurance plans (dental, vision, etc.) when benefits eligible employment ends.  Coverage will be canceled at the end of the month of the benefits eligible employment termination date.  These graduate students may elect COBRA continuation coverage for UT Select, dental and/or vision coverage.  Review COBRA Continuation Coverage for more details.

F-1 or J-1 International Students

F-1 or J-1 international students who lose premium support eligibility will be enrolled in AcademicBlue SHIP by International Student and Scholar Services (ISSS) and the full premium cost will be added to their tuition and fee bill.  To expedite their enrollment, they may email ISSS at intlinsurance@austin.utexas.edu to request their insurance waiver be voided.  They will need to separately enroll their dependents in the Academic Health Plans international student enrollment system after ISSS completes their enrollment and pay the dependent premium cost directly to Academic Health Plans.  Dependent enrollment must be completed within 31 days of the cancellation date. 

Graduate Student Fellows

AGS employees transitioning to graduate student fellowships may enroll in AcademicBlue SHIP voluntary student coverage in the Academic Health Plans voluntary student enrollment system and pay Academic Health Plans directly for their coverage.  Enrollment must be completed within 31 days of their cancellation date.

Graduate student fellows with a qualifying fellowship may elect UT Select, dental or vision coverage.  Review Insurance for Graduate Student Fellows for more details.

HealthCare.gov Marketplace

AGS employees who lose coverage may also explore the health insurance and enrollment options available through the Federal Health Insurance Marketplace at Healthcare.gov.  The Marketplace offers health insurance plans for a variety of needs, and depending upon their income, graduate students may qualify for premium tax credits that they can use to lower the cost of their monthly premiums.  For additional information about Marketplace Plans or plan enrollment, graduate students may use one of the many contact options available through HealthCare.gov.

Frequently Asked Questions

Annual Enrollment: July 15-31, 2021

What is Annual Enrollment?

Annual Enrollment is a once-a-year opportunity for current benefits eligible employees to make any changes to their employee group insurance plan elections.  The enrollment period is July 1 – 31, 2021 and elections take effect at the start of the new plan year, September 1, 2021, and are reflected on the October 1, 2021 pay slip.  Plans that employees may elect, cancel or change include:

  • Health (UT Select)
  • Dental Vision
  • UT Flex Flexible Spending Accounts
  • Voluntary Life
  • Voluntary Accidental Death and Dismemberment
  • Short Term Disability
  • Long Term Disability

Details about these plans are available on the UT System Office of Employee Benefits’ Annual Enrollment website and the Annual Enrollment & Resource Guide for Employees.

The AcademicBlue SHIP health plan is not included in Annual Enrollment.  The AcademicBlue SHIP enrollment period is September 1 – October 1, 2021.

Do I need to participate in Annual Enrollment?

You only need to participate by July 31 if:

  • You are currently a benefits eligible employee;
  • You want to elect Short-Term Disability (STD) or Long-Term Disability (LTD) plans without Evidence of Insurability (EOI), which is a medical questionnaire that requires approval from the insurance company; or
  • You will be a full-time (30+ scheduled weekly hours) academic graduate student employee for the fall semester and would like to retain UT Select as your medical plan.
Can I wait until the AcademicBlue SHIP enrollment period in September to make changes to my benefits?

You may wait until the AcademicBlue SHIP enrollment period in September if:

  • You are currently a benefits eligible AGS employee;
  • You do not want to enroll in Short or Long-Term Disability; and
  • You will be enrolled in AcademicBlue SHIP for the fall semester.
     

Enrollment for New Fall 2021 AGS Employees

As a full-time AGS employee automatically enrolled in UT Select, how do I switch to AcademicBlue SHIP effective September 1, 2021?

You will need to decline UT Select in the My UT Benefits enrollment system.  You will then need to elect AcademicBlue SHIP in the Academic Health Plans enrollment system.  These elections must be completed by October 1, 2021.

As a part-time AGS employee automatically enrolled in AcademicBlue SHIP, how do I switch to UT Select effective September 1, 2021?

You will need to waive AcademicBlue SHIP coverage in the Academic Health Plans waiver system.  You will then need to elect UT Select in the My UT Benefits enrollment system.  These elections must be completed by October 1, 2021.

How do I elect dental, vision and AD&D insurance coverage at no premium cost?

You must be enrolled in AcademicBlue SHIP or another health plan.  You will need to decline UT Select in the My UT Benefits enrollment system, even if you weren’t enrolled in UT Select, and then elect the Premium Sharing Credit plan.  You will receive a notice within the My UT Benefits enrollment system that you must upload documentation of your other health plan coverage.  If you are enrolled in AcademicBlue SHIP, you may skip this step.  If you are enrolled in another health plan, such as a plan through a parent, spouse, or the Healthcare.gov Marketplace, you must upload documentation of that coverage.  You will then need to elect a dental plan, a vision plan, and/or the voluntary AD&D plan.  These elections must be completed by October 1, 2021.

Why haven’t my dental, vision and/or voluntary AD&D premiums changed after I elected the premium sharing credit plan?

Your premiums for dental, vision and/or voluntary AD&D plans do not immediately change after you elect the premium sharing credit plan.  Your premium sharing credit plan requires approval.  The approval process occurs three times per month, prior to each semi-monthly and monthly payroll, to ensure your dental, vision and/or voluntary AD&D premiums are correct on your payslip.  After the approval is completed, you can view your premium changes in My UT Benefits.

How do I add dependent coverage?

If enrolled in AcademicBlue SHIP, you will need to add dependents in the Academic Health Plans enrollment system by October 1, 2021.  You will need to attest to their eligibility for coverage and may be asked to provide documentation of their eligibility as dependents at a later time.

If enrolled in UT Select, you will need to add dependents in the My UT Benefits enrollment system by October 1, 2021.  You will need to upload documentation to verify their eligible dependent status.  Review Evidence of Eligibility to learn more about document requirements.

What should I do if I can’t log into the enrollment systems?

You will not have access to the enrollment systems prior to September 1, 2021.  If you can’t access the enrollment systems after September 1, 2021, review Enrollment Prerequisites to ensure you have completed all required onboarding tasks.  If these tasks do not appear in your Workday inbox, please contact your department regarding the status of your Workday hire process.  UT will not send your information to the enrollment systems until your hire process is complete and you have completed all required onboarding tasks in Workday.

After UT sends your information, you will be sent emails by the enrollment systems within one to two business days, indicating that you have access. You will receive an email from Academic Health Plans (do-not-reply@ahpcare.com) which will confirm you have access to the Academic Health Plans enrollment or waiver systems for AcademicBlue SHIP.  You will receive an email from hrsc@austin.utexas.edu confirming you have access to the My UT Benefits enrollment system for UT Select, dental, vision and other employee group insurance plans.

What if I need coverage prior to September 1, 2021?

If you are a new AGS employee and new to AcademicBlue SHIP coverage, Academic Blue Gap coverage is available at full premium cost to you for the month of August at the rates below.  You will need to enroll in the Academic Health Plans enrollment system between June 1 – August 31, 2021.  If you don’t enroll by August 1, your coverage will be effective as of your payment date.  If you are not enrolled in AcademicBlue SHIP effective September 1, 2021 as an AGS employee or as a student, your August Gap coverage will be rescinded by Academic Health Plans.

 

 

August 1 – 31, 2021 GAP Premium

Student

$266.00

Spouse

$266.00

Child(ren)

$426.00

Even if you buy August GAP coverage for yourself and dependents, you are still considered a new AGS employee effective September 1, 2021, and will still need to enroll in AcademicBlue SHIP if you are a filltime AGS employee, and will also needd to add dependents to your AGS employee coverage by October 1, 2021.

What if I am enrolled in AcademicBlue SHIP coverage as a student prior to becoming a new AGS employee for fall 2021?

Your AcademicBlue SHIP student coverage will end on August 14, 2021 and your AcademicBlue SHIP AGS employee coverage will be effective September 1, 2021.  This is a one-time transition issue.  If you need coverage for the August 15 – August 31, 2021 period, you may purchase two week Gap coverage.  You will need to enroll in the Academic Health Plans enrollment system between June 1 – August 31, 2021.  If you miss the August 31 enrollment deadline, you have a grace period through September 14 and should contact Academic Health Plans for enrollment assistance.  If you are not enrolled in AcademicBlue SHIP effective September 1, 2021 as an AGS employee or as a student, your August Gap coverage will be rescinded by Academic Health Plans.

 

 

August 15 – 31, 2021 GAP Premium

Student

$123.00

Spouse

$123.00

Child(ren)

$196.00

Even if you buy August GAP coverage for yourself and dependents, you are still considered a new AGS employee effective September 1, 2021 and will still need to enroll in AcademicBlue SHIP if you are a full-time AGS employee and will also need to add dependents to your AGS employee coverage by October 1, 2021.

If I became a new AGS employee during summer 2021, am I a continuing or new AGS employee?

If your AGS employment and your UT Select coverage started during the summer months of June, July or August, you are considered a continuing AGS employee.  Review the “Enrollment for Continuing AGS Employees” FAQs for actions you may need to take by October 1, 2021.

Can I enroll in both Academic Blue and UT Select?

No, coverage is not permitted in both plans.

Enrollment for Continuing AGS Employees

How do I change to AcademicBlue SHIP effective September 1, 2021?

If you are part-time, you will automatically be enrolled in AcademicBlue SHIP effective September 1, 2021.  If you need dependent coverage, you will need to add dependents in the Academic Health Plans enrollment system by October 1, 2021, even if your dependents have had UT Select coverage.  You will need to attest to their eligibility for coverage and may be asked to provide documentation of their eligibility as dependents at a later time.

If you are full-time, you will need to enroll in AcademicBlue SHIP in the Academic Health Plans enrollment system by October 1, 2021.  You will then need to cancel UT Select by submitting a life event change in the My UT Benefits enrollment system by October 1, 2021.  You will select “Gain of UTSHIP (UT Student Health Insurance)” as your life event with an effective date of August 31, 2021.  Enrolling in AcademicBlue SHIP does not automatically cancel your UT Select coverage.

What if I don’t want AcademicBlue SHIP coverage effective September 1, 2021?

If you are part-time, you will be automatically enrolled, so you will need to waive coverage in the Academic Health Plans waiver system by October 1, 2021.

If you are full-time, your UT Select enrollment will continue effective September 1, 2021, unless you previously declined UT Select or decline UT Select during Annual Enrollment from July 15 – 31, 2021.

What if I want UT Select coverage effective September 1, 2021?

If you are part-time, you will automatically be enrolled in AcademicBlue SHIP effective September 1, 2021 and your UT Select coverage will automatically be canceled.  You will need to waive Academic Blue in the Academic Health Plans waiver system by October 1, 2021.  You will then need to elect UT Select by submitting a life event in the My UT Benefits enrollment system by October 1, 2021.  You will select “Loss of UTSHIP (UT Student Health Insurance)” as your life event with an effective date of August 31, 2021.  Waiving Academic Blue does not automatically enroll you in UT Select.

If you are full-time and already enrolled in UT Select, your UT Select coverage, including dependent coverage, will automatically continue effective September 1, 2021.  If you would like to make employee group insurance plan changes, you must do so during the July 15 – 31, 2021 Annual Enrollment period.

If my UT Select coverage ended May 31, 2021, am I a continuing or new AGS employee?

Due to the summer break in AGS employee coverage, you are considered a new AGS employee effective September 1, 2021.  If your AGS employee insurance ended after May 31, but before August 1, 2021, you are also considered a new AGS employee effective September 1, 2021.  This is true even if you purchased UT Select COBRA continuation coverage or AcademicBlue SHIP student coverage for the summer.

Review the “Enrollment for New Fall 2021 AGS Employees” FAQs for actions you may need to take by October 1, 2021.

How do get dental, vision and/or voluntary AD&D coverage for no premium cost?

If you are part-time, you will need to decline UT Select by submitting a life event in the My UT Benefits enrollment system after September 1, 2021, even if your UT Select coverage has been canceled due to your automatic enrollment in AcademicBlue SHIP.  You will select “Gain of UTSHIP (UT Student Health Insurance)” as your life event with an effective date of August 31, 2021.    

You will then elect the Premium Sharing Credit plan.  You will receive a notice that you must upload documentation of your other health plan coverage.  If you are enrolled in AcademicBlue SHIP, you may skip this step.  If you are enrolled in another health plan, such as a plan through a parent, spouse, or the Marketplace, you must upload documentation of that coverage.  You may then elect or change your dental plan, vision plan, and/or voluntary AD&D coverage.  These elections must be completed by October 1, 2021.

If you are full-time and plan to enroll in AcademicBlue SHIP, you will need to enroll in the Academic Health Plans enrollment system.  Your AcademicBlue SHIP enrollment may not be completed before September 1, 2021 and must be completed by October 1, 2021.  You will then need to decline UT Select by submitting a life event in the My UT Benefits enrollment system by October 1, 2021.  You will select “Gain of UTSHIP (UT Student Health Insurance)” as your life event with an effective date of August 31, 2021.

You will then elect the Premium Sharing Credit plan.  You will receive a notice that you must upload documentation of your other health plan coverage.  If enrolled in AcademicBlue SHIP, you may skip this step.  You may then elect or change your dental plan, vision plan, and/or voluntary AD&D coverage.  These elections must be completed by October 1, 2021.

If you are full-time and enrolled in a non-UT health plan, such as through a parent, spouse or the Marketplace, you will need to decline UT Select during the July 15 – 31, 2021 Annual Enrollment period, and elect the Premium Sharing Credit plan.  You will receive a notice that you must upload documentation of your other health plan coverage, which you must complete.  You will then need to elect or change your dental plan, vision plan, and/or the voluntary AD&D coverage.  These elections must be completed by July 31, 2021.

Why haven’t my dental, vision and/or voluntary AD&D premiums changed after I elected the premium sharing credit plan?

Your premiums for dental, vision and/or voluntary AD&D plans do not immediately change after you elect the premium sharing credit plan.  Your premium sharing credit plan requires approval.  The approval process occurs three times per month, prior to each semi-monthly and monthly payroll, to ensure your dental, vision and/or voluntary AD&D premiums are correct on your payslip.  After the approval is completed, you can view your premium changes in My UT Benefits.

When will I be able to verify my AcademicBlue SHIP automatic enrollment if I’m a part-time AGS employee?

UT Austin will begin sending eligibility data to Academic Health Plans on September 1, 2021.  It may take up to two business days for your AcademicBlue SHIP enrollment to be completed at Academic Health Plans. Once updated, you will receive an email from “Academic Health Plans (do-not-reply@ahpcare.com)” which will confirm your automatic enrollment, ability to add dependents, or ability to waive coverage.

When will I be able to enroll in AcademicBlue SHIP if I'm a full-time employee?

UT Austin will begin sending eligibility data to Academic Health Plans on September 1, 2021.  It may take up to two business days for your data to be updated at Academic Health Plans.  Once updated, you will receive an email from “Academic Health Plans (do-not-reply@ahpcare.com)” which will confirm your ability to enroll in AcademicBlue SHIP.  Don’t forget to decline your UT Select coverage in My UT Benefits.

What should I do if I was not automatically enrolled in AcademicBlue SHIP as a part-time AGS employee or did not remain with UT Select as a full-time AGS employee?

Your part-time or full-time status is based upon the scheduled weekly hours (SWH) for your jobs in Workday and determines which health plan you will be enrolled in effective September 1, 2021.  UT Austin will send your status to the enrollment systems based on your jobs in Workday as of September 1, 2021.  If your health plan enrollment does not match your expected part-time or full-time status, contact your department(s) to confirm if they have pending job transactions to complete for you and to understand when they will be completed.  Your status and insurance enrollment may change after those job transactions are completed.  Please allow up to two business days for those changes.

When will I be able to enroll in UT Select if I’m a part-time employee?

If you’re transitioning to part-time AGS employment status effective September 1, 2021, your UT Select coverage will automatically be cancelled as of August 31, 2021.  Your new part-time status will be sent to My UT Benefits on September 1, 2021.  It could take up to two business days for your UT Select cancellation to be updated in My UT Benefits.  You will be able to re-enroll in UT Select as a part-time employee after you receive an email from “hrsc@austin.utexas.edu” regarding your full-time to part-time change.

If two business days has elapsed and you haven’t received an email, review “What should I do if I was not automatically enrolled in AcademicBlue SHIP as a part-time AGS employee or did not remain with UT Select as a full-time AGS employee?” for details about why your part-time status change may be delayed.

Can I enroll in both AcademicBlue SHIP and UT Select?

No, coverage is not permitted in both plans.

AcademicBlue SHIP ID Card & Access to Healthcare

If I’m enrolled in AcademicBlue SHIP, will I receive an ID card?

Yes, BlueCross BlueShield of Texas (BCBSTX) will mail you an ID card.  This may take up to two weeks after your AcademicBlue SHIP enrollment is completed.  You may also print or download a temporary ID card after registering for Blue Access for Members (BAM).  To register for BAM, you will need your member ID and group number available in the Academic Health Plans student portal.  You can register for the student portal on the Academic Health Plans website.

What if I’m transitioning from UT Select to AcademicBlue SHIP and need access to health care before my AcademicBlue SHIP enrollment is completed?

Continuing AGS employees may experience a temporary lapse in coverage until enrollment in AcademicBlue SHIP is completed.  Human Resources recommends that AGS employees transitioning from UT Select to AcademicBlue SHIP not schedule health care during the September 1 – 3, 2021 timeframe.  If you must schedule care or experience an emergency situation, please contact the UT Austin Human Resource Service Center at hrsc@austin.utexas.edu or 512-471-4772 to request an “AcademicBlue SHIP emergency update.”  Your enrollment will be completed the same or next business day.  Your AcademicBlue SHIP enrollment will be effective September 1, 2021, ensuring continuous coverage.

Managing Out-of-Pocket Costs

How can I save money if enrolled in AcademicBlue SHIP?
  • Use BlueChoice PPO network providers (you must select BlueChoice PPO)
  • Use University Health Services (UHS) to receive benefits covered at 100% of the allowable amount for covered expenses
  • Use MDLive for a $20 copayment, including behavioral health counseling
  • Use the 24/7 Nurseline for health questions at no cost
  • Consider a Flexible Spending Account to use pre-tax funds to pay for your eligible out-of-pocket expenses
  • Search for rebate and assistance programs, if prescribed specialty drugs (Goodrx.com may help identify options; no affiliation with UT benefits)

If you are enrolled in AcademicBlue SHIP for the 2021-2022 plan year and experience increased out-of-pocket costs compared to UT Select, you may be eligible to apply for the Graduate School's Health Care Assistance Fund.

How can I save money if enrolled in UT Select?
What services does UHS provide?
  • Primary Care/General Medicine services
  • Preventative services (e.g., physical exams, well woman exams)
  • Designated Women’s Health clinic
  • Contraceptive prescription and management
  • STI testing and treatment
  • Gender care and gender affirming hormone treatment
  • Sports Medicine services
  • Same day appointments for more urgent health care needs (UHS can provide IV hydration and some IV medications, perform laceration repairs, set uncomplicated fractures, administer nebulizer treatments, assess abdominal and headache pain, etc., although emergency and higher level care is referred to a community provider or hospital)
  • Travel Health services Allergy injections (after starting allergy injections with an off-site allergist)
  • Physical Therapy (after receiving a referral from a UHS or off-site provider)
  • Nutrition counseling from our Registered, Licensed Dietician
  • Radiology services including digital x-rays and many common ultrasound exams
  • COVID-19 testing
  • Common dermatology procedures like wart treatment and biopsy of skin lesions In-house clinical laboratory Integrated Health counseling services

Graduate Student Fellows

Is UT health insurance available to students with fellowship appointments?

Yes.  Eligibility for UT health insurance for non-employee graduate student fellows is not changing.  These individuals are eligible for AcademicBlue SHIP due to their student status.  They are also eligible for UT Select if they have competitively awarded fellowships with a total value of $10,000 or more.  Non-employee fellows must pay the full cost for either AcademicBlue SHIP or UT Select, although the fellowship may include funding for insurance premiums.  Review Insurance for Graduate Student Fellows for more details about plan options, enrollment and billing.

F-1 or J-1 International Students

If I am automatically enrolled in AcademicBlue SHIP as a part-time AGS employee at no premium cost, do I still need to waive insurance with the International Student and Scholar Services (ISSS) office?

Yes, you must still waive insurance with ISSS each semester so the cost of insurance is not added to your tuition and fee bill.  Information about the waiver process and deadlines is available on the ISSS website.

Contact Information

Academic Health Plans – for AcademicBlue SHIP enrollment assistance
help.ahpcare.com
1-855-247-7587

BlueCross BlueShield of Texas – for AcademicBlue SHIP benefits, prescription, and claims information
1-855-267-0214

BlueCross BlueShield of Texas – for UT Select benefits and claims information
1-866-882-2034

Express Scripts – for UT Select prescription assistance
1-800-818-0155

UT Austin Human Resource Service Center – for benefits eligibility and My UT Benefits enrollment assistance
Contact Us