You can find a lot of information on the website and ask specific questions at

Open Enrollment info session (November 2021)

Most of us have received information about healthcare the day we joined the lab, but it might have felt overwhelming at the time. Blanca Bocobo was kind enough to answer questions for us, and we recorded the Q&A session we had with on Monday. The video is available here:

Global ERG Open Enrollment info session

Here's a TL;DR version of the event:

  • Open enrollment (typically in November) is the only time of the year where you can make changes to your health plan without question asked – use it to adjust your situation. (e.g. Having a baby is considered a qualifying life event, and you have one month to enroll your new child, if it's outside the open enrollment period.) If you don't need to make a change, then you don't have much to worry about.

  • Among qualifying life events, the coming of your partner from abroad does qualify – you do not have to be married.

  • Your healthcare coverage is brought to you by your employer. To get an overview of you plans, you can go to UCPath/Dashboard /Benefits summary

  • When you switch, it's easier if your primary care provider accepts both insurances.

  • You can enroll for disability insurance which may help you if you plan on a pregnancy

  • Flexible Spending Accounts need to be renewed every year. This is a tax-exempt fund for your medical expenses, e.g. to buy medical equipment, glasses and other things not (fully) covered by your health insurance. You can roll-over $550 every year; beyond that unused funds are lost.

  • If you have remaining funding in your FSA, you can use it to purchase items on the FSA store:

  • In general, your health provider will only cover emergency care outside the country (life threatening.) You can review what options are available here

  • you can schedule one-on-one 15 min appointments with the benefits team here:

  • Open Enrollment Consultation with a LBNL Benefits Representative