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COVID-19 Resources for Drexel Faculty & Professional Staff

 Dragons Taking Care of Dragons: Vaccinate, Mask, Distance, Wash, Test

The Drexel University community returns to a fully reopened campus for the start of the 2021-2022 Academic Year under a new COVID-19 Vaccination Policy for all faculty and professional staff (as well as a vaccine requirement for students) and other ongoing public health measures in place, including required masking in all instructional, research and public spaces. For complete and up-to-date information about Drexel’s public health guidelines and requirements, please visit the Response to Coronavirus website.

Benefits — Resources and Updates

Click each subheading below for information about new, existing and expanded benefits available during the COVID-19 crisis.

Medical and Prescription

To help participants access care during the COVID-19 pandemic, the following temporary changes have been made to the medical and prescription coverage offered by Drexel.

Keystone Point of Service, Personal Choice Basic, Personal Choice High, Consumer Directed Health Plan

COVID-19 Testing and Treatment:
Costs are waived for diagnostic testing for COVID -19 through Dec. 31, 2021. Costs are also waived for in-network, inpatient acute treatment associated with a COVID-19 diagnosis through Dec. 31, 2021. Cost-sharing will be applied to post-acute care (e.g. skilled nursing, rehabilitation and long term acute care facilities), outpatient treatment, ambulance transportation to a post-acute setting, and out-of-network care.

Telemedicine services are available through MDLive that allow you to see a board-certified doctor by secure video, phone or mobile app. Through Dec. 31, 2021, costs for virtual visits through MDLive, your primary care doctor and specialists will be waived for COVID-19 diagnosis only. Virtual visits for a non-COVID-19 diagnosis will follow the normal cost share under your medical plan.

Early Prescription Refills and Out-of-Network Exceptions:
Early prescription refills may be available upon request through your pharmacy. A one-time out-of-network pharmacy exception may be available in the event a drug is unavailable through a network pharmacy or if the out-of-network pharmacy is geographically closer to the member or offers delivery not provided by a network pharmacy.

Healthcare and Dependent Care Flexible Spending Accounts

Recently, the Consolidated Appropriations Act and the American Rescue Plan Act was passed, allowing employers to make temporary changes to the rules governing health care and dependent care flexible spending accounts (FSA). These changes offer greater flexibility at a time when the pandemic continues to disrupt access to medical and daycare services. Effective immediately, Drexel adopted the following enhancements to provide the maximum amount of relief permitted by law.

  1. Adjust your FSA election any time in 2021, no qualified life event needed.
  2. Extended deadline for submitting 2020 FSA expenses to March 31, 2022.
  3. Dependent care contribution limit increased in 2021 only.
  4. Dependent care age limit increase for children who turned 14 years old in 2020.
  5. All unused healthcare FSA balances will automatically rollover from 2020 into 2021 and from 2021 into 2022. There is no limit to the rollover amount.

For detailed descriptions, visit the Health Care Flexible Spending and Dependent Care Flexible Spending Account sections on the Drexel Voluntary Benefits Website.

Employee Assistance Program, Health Advocacy and Wellness

Counseling/Employee Assistance Program

Employees and family members can access free, confidential counseling sessions though Drexel's Employee Assistance Program by calling 1.888.881.5462. Each individual is entitled to up to six sessions per issue, per year. In addition, employees can obtain guidance with financial matters, including budgeting, as well as legal information and referrals on matters such as family law and estate planning.

Health Advocacy Service

The health-care industry can sometimes be difficult to navigate. In an effort to assist employees, Drexel University partners with Health Advocate, a company trained to understand the nuances within the health-care system. Whether you need help mitigating concerns related to COVID-19, understanding your benefits, or finding a doctor, Health Advocate is available to you and your dependents by phone, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

When it comes to COVID-19, there are many ways Health Advocate can help with your concerns. Health Advocates' experienced clinical team of medical doctors, registered nurses and other health care professionals will guide you through the health-care process, so you can make even the most difficult health decisions with confidence and focus on getting better, sooner. They will work with you and your family to:

  • Help understand diagnoses and evaluate treatment options;
  • Research and identify the most advanced approaches to care;
  • Locate and evaluate "best-in-class" physicians and medical centers;
  • Coordinate the transfer of medical records, lab results and X-rays;
  • Communicate with physicians to ensure needs (and the needs of families) are being met;
  • Help coordinate care and services before, during and after a hospital stay; and
  • Provide end-to-end, personalized support during all phases of care.

Specifically for the COVID-19 pandemic, Health Advocate's clinical team will:

  • Obtain a detailed history and current status and guide you to contact your Primary Care Physician or other health care provider, if necessary;
  • Direct you to the current recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) relevant to your situation;
  • Direct you to the current recommendations from your local department of health;
  • Provide educational materials based on the CDC recommendations regarding prevention of coronavirus; and
  • Guide you to additional resources as needed (EAP, community support, etc.).

Health Advocate is available to the whole family. Employees, their spouses or domestic partners, dependents, parents and parents-in-law can all take advantage of Health Advocate's personalized services. Please note your medical and personal information will be kept completely confidential.

For questions or assistance, call Health Advocate at 1.866.695.8622 or visit their website, Users will need to register/create a new account in order to log in.

Ten at 10

Incorporating just 10 minutes of healthy activity into your day can add up to a significant difference in your health, wellbeing and quality of life. And during this era of social distancing, it's more important than ever that we find ways to maintain meaningful connections to our colleagues. This program addresses these needs and encourages life-sustaining activities that will promote physical and emotional wellbeing. Implement A Healthier U's Ten at 10 program with your team!

Learn more 

Health Savings Accounts

Over-the-Counter Drugs and Menstrual Products

Health Savings Account (HSA) funds can now be used to purchase menstrual products as well as over-the-counter drugs without a prescription. This applies to purchases made on or after January 1, 2020. Employees can use their HSA debit cards or obtain reimbursement for out-of-pocket purchases by submitting receipts to the HSA administrator, Optum Bank. As always, remember to retain a copy of your receipts for tax purposes. Please contact Optum Bank at 866.234.89 with any questions.

Commuter Accounts

Adjusting Pre-Tax Commuter Deductions

Mass Transit and Non-Drexel Parking Facilities
Employees who are working remotely may wish to adjust or cancel their commuter benefit elections. Changes must be made by the first of the month prior to the month in which the changes apply. For example, changes to June's contributions must be made by May 1. Note: As long as an employee remains eligible to participate in the commuter program, unused commuter funds will not expire and can be used at a later date.

Change or cancel your commuter election by calling 844.690.3992 or online through the benefits portal as follows:

  • Log in to DrexelOne.
  • Go to the Employee tab and under My Benefits, select My Drexel Benefits.
  • Once in the benefits portal, locate the Commuter Benefits section on the right-hand side of the screen and select the Change button.
  • Update the monthly amount for Transit and/or Parking. Enter $0 to eliminate that month's contribution.

Sick, Personal and Vacation Leave Time Accrual and Payout — Temporary Policy Changes

For fiscal year 2022, the maximum accrual allowed for vacation leave time has been increased from 280 to 320 hours through June 30, 2022.

These leave-time policy changes are temporary while we navigate the COVID-19 pandemic. For more information, please review HR-31.

Guiding Our Return With Flexibility

As we come back to campus from so many months of remote work and learning, we have an opportunity not only to return but to reinvent, adopting the lessons we've learned in the past year on everything from business practices to student and employee engagement. Drexel University is committed to providing a flexible work environment that prioritizes well-being for our faculty and professional staff. Please consult Drexel’s Flexible Work Arrangement Policy and its associated resource page for information and processes regarding flexible work arrangements for professional staff.

Frequently Asked Questions

Human Resources Information

How will I be paid if I am showing symptoms or am diagnosed with COVID-19?

If the professional staff member is able and approved to work remotely, they will not be required to use their leave time. Members of a collective bargaining unit should refer to their union contract.

If the professional staff member is unable to work remotely, is expected to work on campus, or is experiencing symptoms and are unable to work as a result, they are required to use their sick leave. If they do not have enough sick leave accrued, the professional staff member will be permitted to utilize future sick leave accruals to ensure that there is no disruption in pay. Members of a collective bargaining unit should refer to their union contract.

Absences that span more than three days may be covered under the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) or the Non-FMLA Medical Leave of Absence. Faculty and professional staff members are encouraged to contact our Leave of Absence Administrator, Lincoln Financial Group. You may file for a leave of absence by phone at 1.888.992.0549 or online by logging in to DrexelOne and selecting “Leave of Absence” in the Benefits Administration section under the “Employee” tab.

What if my family member is showing symptoms or is diagnosed with COVID-19?

Vaccinated people are not required to quarantine if exposed to COVID-19 unless they show symptoms. Faculty and professional staff members who are off work to care for a family member should use available sick time during their absence. Qualifying family members are outlined in the Sick Leave Policy.

Absences that span more than three days may be covered under the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) or the Non-FMLA Medical Leave of Absence. Faculty and professional staff members are encouraged to contact our Leave of Absence Administrator, Lincoln Financial Group. You may file for a leave of absence by phone at 1.888.992.0549 or online by logging in to DrexelOne and selecting “Leave of Absence” in the Benefits Administration section under the “Employee” tab.

Can I ask my faculty/professional staff member if they have COVID-19?

You are permitted to ask faculty/professional staff members how they are feeling in general, but you are not permitted to ask about a specific illness.

Can I communicate with faculty/professional staff members if a co-worker has tested positive for COVID-19?

No. The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) restricts employers from sharing personal health information of an employee. Any faculty/professional staff members who have been exposed to or are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 are required to email and provide their name and a phone number to be contacted by a Drexel representative. A physician will review and evaluate the responses to and communicate with the impacted department accordingly.

How do I resume commonly used services, such as water delivery and document management and shredding, which were previously suspended?

Please contact the appropriate supplier representative to restore any services that were suspended following departure from campus. Please see Procurement Services' COVID-19 Resources page for contact information for the most commonly used suppliers and other pertinent information. Contact information for many Drexel suppliers can also be found on the Supplier Information Dashboard in Smart Source.