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Posted January 12, 2011

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Deadline for Biometric Screening Approaches

There’s only a few weeks left for APS employees to avoid higher monthly insurance costs by completing a biometric screening.

The deadline is Feb. 28 for employees and their spouses/domestic partners who have medical insurance through APS to complete the screening which checks blood pressure, body mass index, cholesterol, blood glucose and pulse/heart rate. Employees and their spouses/domestic partners are strongly encouraged to complete the screening well in advance of the deadline.

Monthly health insurance costs will increase by $20 a month beginning in March for employees who don’t complete the screening. Costs will increase an additional $20 a month for spouses/domestic partners who don’t complete the screening and who are insured through APS.

The cost of providing medical insurance has increased nationally on average between 9-12 percent. To help keep down insurance costs for its employees, APS implemented the Biometric Screening Incentive Program last fall. Though employees are not required to complete the screenings, there is a financial incentive to do so. APS employees who don’t carry medical benefits through the district are not eligible to participate.

Free screenings will be held at APS schools and worksites through January, including at City Centre on Saturday, Jan. 15, 22 and 29. To sign up for a free on-site screening, go to https://www.aps.edu/staff/employee-wellness or contact customer service representatives from the Lovelace health plan at 727-5700 or the Presbyterian health plan at 923-5678.

The health screenings are performed by registered nurses and/or licensed practical nurses. Qualified health care professionals will be available to go over test results and recommend next steps for the patient’s well-being.

Employees also have the option of having the screening completed by their doctor.

Lovelace and Presbyterian health plans will provide APS with a list of insured employees who haven’t completed the screening by Feb. 28. The district also will receive a report that identifies key risk areas among employees. This information will help develop a wellness program that serves the needs of APS employees.

The district won’t receive the results of individual biometric screenings, nor will these results have an impact on premiums or health care coverage.

APS covers about 12,000 employees and spouses/domestic partners through the Lovelace and Presbyterian health plans. More than half have already completed the screening, and another 1,600 are scheduled for onsite screenings through January.

The average age for an APS employee is 46. It is estimated that 80 percent of all illnesses and diseases in the United States are preventable. Having annual checkups and biometric screenings could potentially prevent a serious disease or illness such as heart disease or diabetes.

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