TRUSU health and dental coverage activated

Courtney Dickson, Roving Editor Ω

During the fall 2012 semester, complaining about the TRUSU extended health and dental plan not being activated became an ordinary part of campus conversation.

According to Dustin McIntyre, TRUSU president, health and dental this year was integrated into students’ myTRU accounts to make opting in and out more straight-forward.

In early October the new system crashed and was not generating the correct files.

“It was an unfortunate error,” McIntyre said.

TRUSU had to create new files which proved difficult for them due to learning how to operate the new technology.

On Dec. 10, 2012, McIntyre said, “Everyone is now active.”

After visiting her life-long dentist in her hometown of Williams Lake, Pam Lawrence, third-year nursing, received numerous phone calls from the dental office saying the insurance didn’t “go through.”

Lawrence was told she owed upwards of $300.

“I’ve gone to this dentist my whole life and now I feel like I’m in bad standing with them,” Lawrence said. “I don’t even want to call them back because I don’t know what to say.”

Lawrence studied at TRU’s Williams Lake campus for the first two years of her degree. The William’s Lake campus is not unionized, therefore had no health and dental plan. To come to the Kamloops campus and not have activated health and dental coverage was “frustrating.”

“We pay $248 for the year. It’s December. Health is important and we’re not getting covered,” Lawrence said.

Lawrence contacted Nathan Lane, executive director at TRUSU, in early December. After learning about her situation, he contacted Green Shield, the TRUSU health insurance provider and had her file rectified.

As of Dec. 4, Lawrence was reimbursed for the cost and her health and dental was fully activated.

Any students who are still encountering difficulty with extended health and dental coverage are asked to contact the students union immediately. Reimbursements will be made for any medical claims backdating to Sept. 1, 2012.

“We encourage students to talk to us about any issues with health and dental,” McIntyre said. “Many [students] have come to us with issues and we’ve been able to resolve them.”

Costs students can claim include, but are not limited to, prescription drugs, oral surgery, vision care, physiotherapy, medical equipment and custom-made orthotics. For a full list visit the TRUSU office in the Independent Centre.