Federal employees insured under GEHA now have until Dec. 31 to get vaccinated and receive a $75 incentive, as part of the insurance company’s efforts to support vaccination within the federal workforce. GEHA announced Sept.10.
This is the second time GEHA has extended the deadline — originally moving it from July 31 to Sept. 6 — and comes in response to President Joe Biden’s recent executive order requiring all feds to get a COVID-19 vaccine.
The GEHA insurance company will extend its vaccination incentive program to Sept. 6, 2021, to encourage more federal employees to get their COVID-19 vaccines, the health insurer announced July 30.
“GEHA is committed to the health and safety of the U.S. federal workforce in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. Extending the Vaccination Incentive Program is paramount to our commitment to our members and their families,” Interim President and CEO Rich Bierman said in a news release.
The expansion of the $75 reward program — which originally gave feds until July 31 to receive their vaccines — comes less than a day after President Joe Biden announced that federal employees would have to attest to their vaccination status or face workplace restrictions.
The GEHA insurance company announced June 29 that federal employees enrolled in its medical plans will be eligible for a COVID-19 vaccination incentive program starting July 1, as part of the organization’s efforts to promote a healthy federal workforce.
GEHA plan members who are 18 years and older and have not already reached their annual wellness program reward limit will receive $75 to spend on qualified medical expenses, such as co-pays and drug costs, after providing proof of vaccination.
Employees who are near their annual wellness program reward limit will receive whatever amount below $75 will get them to reach the maximum.
Members must get their vaccine on or before July 31 of this year to be eligible and may submit that proof until the end of 2021. Members who have already received their vaccinations are eligible and must simply submit proof of doing so.
“As the second largest medical benefit provider of federal employees, GEHA is committed to helping safeguard the health and safety of the U.S. federal workforce, and combating COVID-19 has been at the top of the priority list for more than a year,” Interim President and CEO Rich Bierman said in a news release.
“Federal workers are the backbone of our nation’s infrastructure, and our vaccination incentive program is designed to support them and their families during this critical time.”
GEHA is the second federal insurance program to offer incentives for proof of vaccinations.
Its 2 million members, combined with the 5.6 million members of Blue Cross Blue Shield — the first federal insurer to offer such an incentive — represent approximately 95 percent of the 8 million people who receive benefits under the Federal Employee Health Benefits Program, meaning that a majority of federal employees should be eligible for some sort of incentive.
Information on how to submit proof of vaccinations is available on the GEHA website.
Jessie Bur covered the federal workforce and the changes most likely to impact government employees for Federal Times.