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RF Open Enrollment 2019 FAQ

RF postdoc employees and fellows have the option to switch their benefits options during the open enrollment period running May 15, 2019 through May 30, 2019. This is an opportunity for current RF postdoc employees, postdoc fellows and postdoc fellows paid direct to consider the expanded health insurance options made possible by the  new changes to our postdoc benefits fringe rate  that starts July 1. 

Some Frequently Asked Questions are listed below. For detailed questions on your benefits, contact Human Resources.

What is open enrollment and why is it being offered to me?

A recent change in the cost of benefits and a lowering of the fringe rate for RF postdoc employees has also allowed SUNYRF to expand the health insurance options for RF Postdoctoral Associates (RF-funded postdoc employees), Postdoc Fellows and Postdoc Fellows Paid Direct (postdocs funded on externally sponsored fellowships, paid either through the university or directly to the fellow).  The changes will become effective July 1. In preparation for that change, current RF postdoc employees and  postdoc fellows will have the opportunity to elect to change their benefits choices during a period of open enrollment from May 15 to May 30, 2019.

For more on why this change is happening, consult our Postdoc Fringe Rate FAQ.


What are the new choices available during open enrollment? 

Starting July 1, 2019, RF postdoc employees (Postdoctoral Associates) can enroll in Graduate Student & Postdoctoral Employee Health Plan through UMR, in addition to the health care plans currently available. P ostdoc Fellows can enroll in the regular employee health plan, in addition to the health care plan currently available through UMR. Postdoc Fellows Paid Direct (postdocs who receive their funding directly from their external fellowship provider) now have the choices of both the original employee plans and the UMR plan.  An overview of the benefits options for RF postdoc employees and postdoc fellows can be reviewed here: 

RF Postdoc Employee Benefits Bulletin (Apr 2019)  

RF Postdoc Fellow Benefits Bulletin (Apr 2019) 

RF Postdoc Benefits Handbook 2019


Where can I check the doctors that would be covered if I switch to the UMR plan?

Go to and click on Find A Provider. There, either search or navigate to the network: POMCO Select with Choice Plus, and then on the next page, click the “Search for participating providers in the Choice Plus Network” and then you will be able to search by city, state, zip code, provider type, name, etc.


Where can I check the doctors that would be covered if I switch to the Empire Blue Cross Blue Shield plan?

Go to and click on Providers, and Find a Provider.  There, search by selecting a plan or network under the PPO network.


I’ve decided to change my health plan during open enrollment; what do I do now?

Postdoc Employees

You will need to complete a new RF benefits enrollment form during the open enrollment period. The forms can be found at, using the following path:  Regular & Postdoc Employees, Health Insurance.  On the Health Insurance page, there is a Forms box on the right hand side of the page and the last item in the list is the Postdoc Employee Enrollment Form.  Here is a direct link to the Health Insurance page.

Postdoc Fellows

You will need to complete a new RF benefit enrollment form during the open enrollment period. The form can be found at at the bottom of the page, called Health Insurance Form.


If I change my health plan, will my dental and vision coverage change as well?

Postdoc employees will continue to be enrolled in the regular dental and vision benefits; a change to UMR will not change your enrollment status.

Postdoc fellows changing to the Empire Blue Cross Blue Shield plan will be enrolled in the regular employee dental and vision plans. Those who remain in the UMR health plan will continue to have the bundled dental and vision package included in the one health plan rate.


When will the changes be effective?

If you make changes during the open enrollment period, the effective date of your request will be July 1.   


I am a State-funded postdoc, does this open enrollment period apply to me? 

No, this only affects RF-funded Postdoctoral Associates, RF Postdoc Fellows, and RF Postdoc Fellows Paid Direct.


Where can I ask more questions?

For general questions on this change, you can contact the Office of Postdoctoral Affairs at
For questions on benefits, please contact the Benefits Office at 632-6180 or
For questions on appointments,  please contact Dianne Supovitz in HR at





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