Thursday, May 05, 2005


No, not of the prostitution variety. I need your advice.

So, I interviewed in the "new city" on Friday and was offered a job on Tuesday. A great job, but still at a substantial pay cut from my current salary (but it's just so much cheaper to live there). We're working through making a decision on it.

So, today my period starts. No surprise there. I'm used to it. After charting for 26 cycles, I'm beginning to think that pregnancy for me will be the next immaculate conception, because this whole "sex makes baby" thing is a myth. A complete myth propogated by teenagers and crack whores. It's just an urban legend, I promise. Have all the unprotected sex you want, you will not get pregnant. An STD, perhaps, a baby- no.

Anyway, new firm has three months full paid maternity leave (woo!) and an additional month of maternity leave at half pay (holy fucking woo!). Much better than my current firm's policy of 6 weeks (which was 3 months, but I realized today has been cut to basically nothing). However, I am not sure if the leave is available until after you have been with the firm for a full year. I asked about it and am awaiting a response.

So my question is this. They have insurance through Blue Cross Blue Shield either through a PPO or HMO arrangement. We already know we are going to have issues and will likely need medical assistance. My current employer's policy covers infertility up to $10,000. How do I ask for information about the new firm's coverages without specifically giving them the heads up that guess what - my hooha's broken?!?!?

Any ideas or advice?

And yes, Paris was great. I actually enjoyed Amsterdam more, but I've just been too damn busy to report on what happened. But lots of soft cheese and wine was imbibed in. Just to let you know how busy I've been, I'm still not unpacked!


At 3:19 PM, Anonymous Jenn said...

The only things I can think to do are to ask HR for a copy of exactly what is covered and what isn't. If they can't give you summary, ask for a copy of the SPD (Summary Plan Document).

At 4:07 PM, Anonymous Leggy said...

April- glad you are back. I was wondering about you.

Congrats on the new job- I thought your husband said he didn't want to move?

Anyway, I'm with Jenn- ask for the SPD or an exact description of what's covered. I had a similar experience when my husband changed jobs. You can also ask HR to speak to the Blue Cross and ask specific questions to the health plan staff.

I would go with the PPO- as long as you go in network, the benefits likely won't be any lower than the HMO, and at least you'll have some coverage out of network.

Good luck!

At 1:50 AM, Blogger Millie said...

You could also talk to Blue Cross directly and ask what they cover for this particular employer. PPOs are almost always better and more flexible. Best of luck!

At 1:07 PM, Blogger Jen said...

Glad to hear you had a good trip! We want details!

Congratulations on the job offer--and yes, you should be able to get the plan details, either from HR, a call to BC/BS, or looking at their website.

At 8:51 PM, Blogger DeadBug said...

I would also recommend speaking directly with BCBS. The HR person at the new job should be able to put you in touch with someone who has the specifics on the company's particular plan.

Best of luck--hope the move works out, if you choose to go that route!


At 9:03 PM, Blogger bschneider5 said...

I'm sure there's an 800 number to call... Bradsblog

At 10:22 AM, Anonymous Lola said...

I actually had this come up when I started at my current firm last fall. Instead of asking the office manager about the specifics of their insurance program, I called BCBS directly and got the scoop from them (they didn't have anything specific on the BCBS website.) The firm should be able to provide you with documentation of coverage as well, but I know my firm didn't have one when I asked.

Good luck, and congrats on the new job offer!

At 4:29 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

All good advice; what you want to follow up on is the level of infertility coverage. Some pay for "IF testing" which means you get a diagnosis covered but no treatment. Others will pay for drugs but not surgeries. A total of $10K sounds to me like they cover testing and drugs but probably not surgeries. A PPO usually won't make you have referrals for every little thing.

I wouldn't worry about the mat. leave policy taking a year of service to go into effect; that is the least of your concerns as a pregnancy would use up 9 months of that and you could just postpone resuming tx and/or ttc until you are ON the job. Seriously, it would be great to get the move out of the way and settle in a little. Stress helps nothing.

I can't remember your diagnosis but if it's PCOS only, you may be able to get a lot of help from a regular (ie not reproductive) endocrinologist, which is usually fully covered by insurance. Just a thought, since PCOS is so much easier to treat these days. BTDT!!!!

At 4:32 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

OH! Almost forgot. See if they offer supplemental disability such as AFLAC. You can use that for pregnancy bedrest if need be BUT you have to pay into that for 10 months prior to the pregnancy onset. It will make up what percentage you lose while on disability, but will NOT cover maternity leave of course.


At 8:42 AM, Blogger Internal Spring said...

I agree w/ the suggestion to contact the insurance company directly - or you could ask for the plan document - I'd go with the PPO rather than the HMO, it will likely give you more clinics to choose from.

I also have 10K worth of coverage. Someone recently told me that with the way insurance companies contract for lower rates you can even get almost two IVF's for that (though without counting medications).

Good luck with the decision making process!


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