Over the last two weeks I’ve given you the dates of the 2011 Open Season – November 14 through December 12 – and offered some reasons why you should both care about it and use the opportunity to review your health, dental and vision, and (if you are an employee) tax saving needs. I’ve also reviewed your Open Season options for the Federal Employees Health Benefits (FEHB), Federal Employees Dental and Vision Insurance (FEDVIP), and Federal Flexible Spending Account (FSAFEDS) programs, and filled you in on the rules that control your ability to carry that coverage into retirement.

This time I want to let you know how to find out what these programs cost, where you can find more detailed information about the choices available to you, and how to make Open Season elections.

Program Cost

* For FEHB insurance rates, go to www.opm.gov/insure/health/rates

* For FEDVIP dental rates, go to www.opm.gov/insure/dental/rates

* For FEDVIP vision rates, go to www.opm.gov/insure/vision/rates

* For FSAFEDS, go to www.FSAFEDS.com to see how much you can set aside pre-tax

Information Sources

Download the 2012 Guide to Federal Benefits at www.opm.gov/insure/health for information about the FEHB. By clicking on the topics in the left hand margin, you can compare the costs, benefits, and features of different plans. If you want to download specific plan brochures, you can either get them at that site or go to www.opm.gov/FEHBbrochures.

To learn more about FEDVIP, go to www.opm.gov/insure/dental/index.asp or www.opm.gov/insure/vision/index.asp, where you will find the eligibility criteria, plan information and premium costs.

To get a copy of the FSAFEDS program brochure go to www.fsafeds.com/forms/OPM-FSA-OVTF-10-031.pdf or call 1-877-372-3337.

Open Season Elections

* FEHB: Employees can use the Health benefits Election form (SF 2809). Retirees can go o Open Season Online at https://retirefehb.opm.gov or call Open Season Express at 1-800-332-9798 (TTY 1-800-878-5707).

* FEDVIP: Go to www.BENEFEDS.com or call 1-877-888-3337 (TTY 1-877-889-5680).

FSAFEDS (employees only): Go to FSAFEDS.com or call 1-877-372-3337 (TTY 1-800-952-0450)

In my last and final article about this year’s Open Season, I’ll introduce you to OPM’s latest effort at “going green.”