Although UTU members participating in the Railroad Employees National Health and Welfare Plan and the National Railway Carriers and United Transportation Union Health and Welfare Plan (NRC/UTU) have received notices that they must provide Social Security and Medicare Health Insurance Claim numbers for dependents, many have failed to do so.

If the required information is not provided as directed, the dependents will be dropped from health care coverage on Jan. 31, 2011.


Vaccine for the highly contagious H1N1 virus (commonly called “swine flu”) is now being released to the public as supplies become available. The information below will help you decide if you should obtain the vaccine.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) currently recommends that certain priority groups should receive the H1N1 flu vaccine. These groups are:

  • pregnant women;
  • caregivers for children younger than six months of age;
  • health care and emergency medical services personnel;
  • children and young adults from six months through 24 years old;
  • persons aged 25 through 64 years who have underlying health conditions (such as asthma, diabetes, conditions that suppress the immune system, heart disease and kidney disease) that might increase their risk for flu-related complications.

In an effort to minimize the occurrence of H1N1 flu among railroad plan participants and their dependents covered under group health insurance plans GA-23111 (for former railroad employees and their dependents), the cooperating rail labor organizations and UnitedHealthcare have taken a number of steps to reduce the cost of immunization.

To that end, effective immediately, group health insurance plans provided under GA-23111 will cover the administration of the H1N1 vaccine through the end of December 2009 for covered plan participants and dependents, with no co-pays, deductibles or coinsurance payments.

Where to get the vaccine

Employees and their dependents have a broad range of options from which to choose where to get the H1N1 flu vaccine:

  • Public health clinics: The H1N1 vaccine should be available at most local public health clinics at no cost. Please call the health clinic first to make sure it has the vaccine.
  • Retail pharmacies and other clinics: Please call the pharmacy or other clinic first to make sure it has the H1N1 vaccine available.
  • Doctor’s office: Contact your primary care physician or network provider to find out if the H1N1 vaccine is available and if you should be immunized. Please note office visit co-pays will not apply if you see your doctor solely to obtain the H1N1 flu vaccine.

For the latest information on the H1N1 flu vaccine, please visit the Centers for Disease Control website ( and/or contact UnitedHealthcare at (877) 201.4840;

Here’s an opportunity to save a 44-cent stamp and better assure your UnitedHealthcare payments for GA-23111 plans and COBRA coverage arrive on time.

It’s called electronic funds transfer, or EFT, and it permits your UnitedHealthcare premiums for GA-23111 plans and COBRA coverage to be automatically deducted from your checking account, even when you are away from home.

Using EFT, says UnitedHealthcare, provides peace of mind that your insurance premiums reach UnitedHealthcare on time and that you always will pay the proper rate and that the proper amount will be deducted from your checking account.

Your EFT payments will show up on your bank statement.

To sign up with UnitedHealthcare for EFT:

  • Print out and complete the downloadable form provided below, and sign it.
  • Attach a void check.
  • Send the completed and signed form, with the voided check, to:
Railroad Accounts: EFT
450 Columbus Blvd.
Hartford, CT 06103

You should continue making your monthly payments by check until notified that your monthly automated withdrawal will occur. You will receive a “verification of electronic premium withdrawal” statement, which will replace the monthly billing statement. The statement will advise the date when the withdrawal will take place and the amount to be withdrawn.

Also, premiums must be paid through the current period in order to enroll.

Answers to questions can be obtained by calling UnitedHealthcare at (800) 842-5252.

Click here for the enrollment form.