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Frequently Asked Questions

Below are frequently asked questions the HR Department receives about employee benefits. Please send your questions to Dana.Swarts@viu.ca

Benefits

When logged into the Manulife website, on the far right, click on "Contact Us" and then select "Send a note," which shows up on the left. Choose "General Inquiry," and then ask for a replacement card in the text box. Your card will arrive at VIU in your VIU mailbox in about two weeks.

If you need your card right away, you can print off a copy through the Manulife benefits secure site. Once logged in, click on "My Benefits Card" tab which shows up in the middle of the screen. You can click on the thumbnail of the card and print off a copy.

You may also save your Manulife card on your phone in your Wallet app (Apple and Android supported).

Your extended health benefits covers emergency travel assistance for you and any spouse and/or dependents who are covered on your extended health benefits. On the back of your card is the number to call for emergency travel assistance in case you should nee it.

Details of coverage can be found in your benefits booklet.

Keep in mind that you are covered for a specific medical problem or chronic condition that was diagnosed but medically stable prior to departure.

You also might want to check if there is a travel advisory for the area you are traveling to. If you are traveling somewhere questionable, it might be best to email or call Manulife to make sure your coverage will be okay.

Your claim statement from Manulife will have notes at the bottom with an explanation for each component of your claim. For more details, it is best to phone Manulife directly at 1.800.575.2200. Be sure to have your Plan Contract Number (83719) and your Certificate Number available; your Certificate Number is your Employee Number without the first zero(s).

To prevent disappointment on a declined claim, be sure you or the provider sends in a pre-authorization before you receive the dental/vision/equipment service.

It may be that your spouse had benefits through another employer and those benefits have ended. Your Coordination of Benefits needs to be updated. Check with your Benefits Coordinator.

Children are covered up until the age of 19 (for MSP) or 21 (extended health and dental) as long as they are unmarried and are not on their own employee benefits plan.

After the age of 19 (MSP), and 21 (extended health and dental), and until their 25 birthday, children will be considered Overage Dependents and covered under the above benefits plan as long as they are unmarried, are not covered on their own employee benefits plan, are mainly supported by you, and attending school full-time at an accredited institution.

If your dependent meets the criteria as an overage dependent, the following information will need to be sent to the Benefits Coordinator each year:

  • Name of child or children
  • Birthdate(s)
  • Educational Institution(s)
  • Expected graduation date(s)

You will need to sign paperwork with 'wet ink' to change your beneficiary for life insurance. To do so, please set up a meeting with your Benefits Coordinator.

If you qualify for benefits, VIU pays 100% of the benefits premiums, including MSP. If you take a leave from VIU, HR and/or Payroll will communicate with you if you need to pay for your benefits premiums.

If you qualify for benefits at VIU, the Benefits Coordinator will be in touch with you to get you signed up. We welcome inquiries, if you're not sure if you qualify.

Vaccinations (i.e. shingles, travel vaccinations and other preventative medicine) are not covered through VIU's benefits plan.

BC's Fair PharmaCare plan helps BC residents with the cost of eligible prescription drugs, certain medical supplies, and pharmacy services. Each employee covered on VIU's extended health plan needs to register for Fair PharmaCare as you may qualify for a rebate on your medication through this plan. Fair PharmaCare needs to be applied to the prescription before the claim gets sent to Manulife (this happens automatically at the pharmacy when you show your Manulife card).

If you do not provide Manulife with your Fair PharmaCare number, claims may be declined by Manulife. To register, visit Register for Fair PharmaCare.

Once you have your Fair PharmaCare number, email it to the Benefits Coordinator and it will be sent to Manulife. If you do not provide Manulife with your Fair PharmaCare number, claims may be declined by Manulife.

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