Postdoctoral Scholar Health Benefits

Health Benefits Program

Postdoctoral Scholars in all title codes must have health benefits coverage while employed at UCLA. Postdoctoral Scholars who choose to enroll in the HMO or PPO medical, dental, and vision plans will have their insurance premiums covered in full by the sponsoring department except for the costs of the postdoctoral scholars’ required monthly premium contributions. Coverage will include the postdoctoral scholar and any eligible family members.

UCLA Postdoctoral Scholars Health Benefits Program
Effective January 1, 2012


All postdoctoral scholars, including employees, fellows and paid-directs have access to health insurance through the system-wide UC Postdoctoral Scholar Benefits Plan (PSBP). This comprehensive program offers Medical, Dental, Vision, Life and AD&D Insurance, Short-Term Disability Insurance, and Voluntary Long-Term Disability Insurance.

The PSBP comprises the following plans:

  1. Medical: Health Net HMO or PPO
  2. Dental: Health Net DHMO or Principal PPO
  3. Health Net Vision PPO
  4. Life, AD&D and Short-Term Disability Insurance offered through Standard Insurance (you will be automatically enrolled in these plans, which are always paid by university, usually the PI.)
  5. Voluntary Long-Term Disability Insurance offered through Standard Insurance

The following presentation is in webinar format, with the presentation automatically playing the sound and advancing to each slide until the end of the presentation. This format allows you to click on any slide at any point during the presentation to hear and read that particular slide’s information. To do this, simply click on the slide of your choice under the Table of Contents found in the lower right half of the screen.

University Contributions

The following benefits require 100% University contribution on behalf of ALL postdoctoral scholars (employees, fellows and paid-directs):

  • Costs of HMO, or PPO medical, dental and vision plan coverage for Postdoctoral Scholars and their families
  • Workers Compensation
  • Life Insurance, including AD&D
  • Short-term Disability

The postdoctoral scholar CANNOT be required to personally pay any of the costs of these benefits.

Postdoctoral scholars who choose to enroll in the HMO or PPO medical, dental, and vision plans will have their insurance premiums covered in full by the sponsoring department except for the costs of the postdoctoral scholars’ required monthly premium contributions.

Postdoctoral Scholar Rates and Contributions

In accordance with the UAW contract, beginning January 1, 2012, Postdoctoral Scholars will be required to pay a small percentage of their healthcare premium.

PSBP Plan Changes and Monthly Rates

For information on the contributions billing process for Paid-Directs and Fellows, see the following presentation by Garnett-Powers.

PSBP Premium Contribution Collection Process Webinar

Period of Initial Eligibility

Postdoctoral scholars are given 31 days from their appointment begin date to select and enroll in the UC PSBP. If the forms are not completed within 31 days of the appointment begin date, University coverage can only be provided on an exception basis.


In some exceptional cases, Postdoctoral Fellows and Paid-Directs may be asked to pay some portion of the premiums. When a Postdoctoral Fellow (3253) or Postdoctoral Paid-Direct (3254) has a funding source that designates or allows health benefits to be charged to her/his research or institutional allowance, the sponsoring department’s share of the HMO or PPO costs may be covered by these sources. However, if the funding source is insufficient to cover the sponsoring department’s share, then the sponsoring department will be responsible for covering the remaining cost.

For these exceptional cases, sponsoring departments must request an exception from Academic Services. The department must provide proof of benefits allocations from the outside funding agency and the Premium Contribution Acknowledgement Form to indicate the amount of the insurance premium that will be paid by the department with the balance paid by the Postdoctoral Scholar.

PSBP Premium Contribution Acknowledgement Form

Note: All appropriate areas of the form must be completed and signed by both the Postdoctoral Scholar and Principal Investigator, with each keeping a copy for their records.


A complete description of benefits together with enrollment instructions and all necessary forms are available on the Garnett Powers and Associates website.

Evidence of Coverage

If the postdoctoral scholar chooses to opt out of the UC PSBP plan, s/he must provide evidence of coverage and submit this documentation with the initial appointment paperwork.

Postdoctoral Scholar Health Benefits Enrollment Process

The Postdoctoral Scholar Health Benefits Enrollment Process chart (health enrollment cheat sheet) provides guidance on the health benefits enrollment process. The cheat sheet also provides guidance on the opt-out process for postdoctoral scholars.

Postdoctoral Scholar Health Benefits Enrollment Process Chart


Beginning January 1st, 2013, a new service is available to all Postdoctoral Scholars called SelectPlus, previously known as ‘Sittercity.’ The cost of membership in this service is paid for by the University of California and is completely free for Postdoctoral Scholars. You will simply pay for the services of the caregivers that you hire.

To register, visit SelectPlus for UC Postdocs.

Repatriation & Medical Evacuation Coverage

The UC PSBP also includes the automatic repatriation and medical evacuation coverage necessary to satisfy the J Visa Program for Postdocs holding J-1 visas and their dependents with J-2 visas. Complete information is on the Garnett Powers and Associates website.


General eligibility conditions:

  1. Contact your departmental HR/personnel representative or visit the Garnett Powers and Associates website.

Benefits charges:

  1. Contact Oletha Brown at in Campus Human Resources.

Additional assistance with benefits questions:

  1. Contact Academic Services at

Revised 12/2016