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10/23/2018 12:52:00 PM
Purdue backs off booting working spouses from health plan, for now

Dave Bangert, Journal and Courier Columnist

WEST LAFAYETTE – A day before Purdue University faculty and staff were scheduled to hold a forum to air their grievances over changes to their health care coverage for 2019, Purdue backed off a plan to cut primary health benefits for working spouses – “at this time.”

In a letter sent to faculty and staff Tuesday morning, Bill Sullivan, Purdue’s treasurer and chief financial officer, wrote that the university figured taking away coverage for working spouses – part of a health plan the university’s trustees signed off on Oct. 12 – would have saved Purdue $4 million a year on coverage “that should be the responsibility of other employers.”

Sullivan called the coverage “a luxury that many employers are choosing to no longer provide” and the university’s administration believed covering working spouses “over the long term is not in the best interest of the larger Purdue community.”

But he acknowledged the blowback over the past two weeks for those who said the change “went too far, too fast.” 

Sullivan said primary health coverage for working spouses would be part of Purdue’s 2019 plan. But he hinted that some sort of change was on the horizon. He said Purdue would use the next six months “to review outright elimination of coverage or merely requiring a surcharge for continued coverage.”

Related Links:
• Journal & Courier full text

Related Stories:
• Purdue cuts working spouses from 2019 health plan, as employees cry foul

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