Annual Enrollment is here

Oct. 11 through Oct. 31 is your opportunity to elect your benefits for the coming year

Annual Enrollment—this year, Oct. 11 through Oct. 31—is your once-a-year opportunity to elect your benefits for the coming year. Take advantage of this time to review and update your benefits, ensuring you have the best coverage to support you and your loved ones in 2024.

Great benefits are central to the university's vision to retain, recruit, and inspire the very best to work at Johns Hopkins. That's why it's enhancing its medical benefits to make taking care of your health much easier.

While the university continues to work to manage rising health care costs, you will see some modest increases in your share of the cost of health care benefits for 2024. As in years past, JHU will absorb a large share of the increases to help mitigate cost increases to faculty and staff members.

Review what's new for 2024 and explore the resources available to help you and your family prioritize your health and lessen your stress about managing your health care. And then be sure to enroll by Oct. 31.

What's new for 2024

Beginning in January 2024, the university will offer a single health insurance administrator through CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield. Employees will have the choice between three medical plans—the Core PPO Plan, Enhanced PPO Plan, and High-Deductible Health Plan—through CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield (BCBS). The Kaiser Permanente HMO Plan will continue to be available to those who are already enrolled in it.

The CareFirst medical plans include:

  • Access to Quantum Health, JHU's new health care advocacy service
  • Prescription drug coverage through Capital Rx, which replaces Express Scripts
  • One medical ID card for both your medical and pharmacy benefits
  • A combined out-of-pocket maximum (the most you'll pay in a year for medical, mental health, and prescription drugs)

In 2024, you can set aside more money in your health savings account, or HSA, than you did in 2023. The amounts you can contribute tax-free are increasing from $3,850 to $4,150 for individual coverage and from $7,750 to $8,300 for family coverage. As a reminder, you can save on taxes in three ways with an HSA because contributions, withdrawals for qualified medical expenses, and earnings are not taxed. You can use your HSA to pay for current health care expenses or to save for eligible expenses anytime in the future.

Other pretax savings limits are expected to be announced by the IRS later this fall. You may contribute up to $3,050 annually to a health care flexible spending account, or FSA, to pay for eligible health care expenses, including copays, deductibles, prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, and more. If you currently participate in the health care FSA, up to $610 (minimum $30) of your remaining 2023 account balance will automatically roll over to your 2024 health care or limited purpose FSA with WEX.

If you are enrolled in the high-deductible health plan, or HDHP, along with the HSA, you may participate in a limited-purpose flexible spending account to pay for dental and vision care with pretax dollars. It's important to note that you cannot participate in both an HSA and a general-purpose health care FSA. You may use your HSA funds to pay for regular medical expenses. To maximize your savings and tax benefits, consider participating in both the HSA and limited-purpose FSA.

The pretax savings limits for commuter benefits may increase next year as well. The current monthly pretax spending limit for non-JHU parking is $300 per month. Remember that you may qualify for JHU's transit or parking subsidy if you work in Maryland or D.C. and meet the eligibility requirements.

As the university continues to support its families with their child care needs, the adjusted gross income requirements have increased for the child care scholarship and voucher program. The scholarship awards also have increased for 2024.

Actions needed

Since the university is making changes to its medical plan options, you may need to select a new plan during Annual Enrollment to make sure you have the coverage you want in 2024.

If you're currently enrolled in either the CareFirst BCBS PPO Plan or the EHP Classic POS Plan and you don't select a new plan, you'll be enrolled automatically in the CareFirst Core PPO Plan at the same coverage level you have now (at 2024 costs).

If you're currently enrolled in either the CareFirst High-Deductible Health Plan or the Kaiser Permanente HMO Plan and don't select a new plan, you'll stay enrolled at the same coverage level you have now (at 2024 costs). Everyone enrolled in the CareFirst HDHP, however, will need to reselect their HSA contribution amount.

You must enroll if you wish to:

  • Participate in a health care FSA, limited-purpose FSA, or dependent care FSA (you must reenroll each year)
  • Contribute to a health savings account (if you enroll in the CareFirst BCBS HDHP)
  • Apply (or reapply) for the child care voucher program and/or scholarship to JHU Partner Centers
  • Add or remove a dependent to or from any plans
  • Increase your life insurance coverage

Resources to help with your decisions

To help you make informed decisions, make sure to take advantage of the many resources available to you.

  • Visit the Annual Enrollment website for plan comparisons, videos, and more.
  • Visit ALEX, the university's interactive decision-support tool. ALEX acts as a virtual benefits counselor to help you learn more about your JHU benefits options so that you can choose what's best for you. New features this year include a text-based option and family plan comparison tool.
  • Attend a town hall webinar. Hear from the Benefits team and get answers to all your questions at a virtual town hall meeting. View the schedule and mark your calendar to attend. Can't make a live session? Listen to a recorded webinar here.


Contact the Benefits Service Center by emailing or calling 410-516-2000.

Posted in Benefits+Perks

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