News: WEA Trust to Exit Group Health Insurance Program

WEA Trust to Exit Group Health Insurance Program

Original: June 22, 2022

Updated: August 23, 2022

WEA Trust will no longer offer health insurance as of December 31, 2022. This change impacts all current WEA network areas and plan designs offered by the State of Wisconsin Group Health Insurance Program.

  • Members who currently have coverage through WEA will continue to have coverage with WEA through December 31, 2022.
  • Members who currently have coverage through WEA will need to select a new health plan during the 2023 open enrollment period, which is scheduled for September 26 to October 21, 2022.
  • WEA’s departure does not create a special enrollment opportunity.

ETF News: WEA Trust to Exit Group Health Insurance Program (June 22, 2022)


Upcoming 2023 Health Plan Changes

“ETF worked with health plans to provide all members with more choices in 2023,” according to Eileen Mallow, director of the Office of Strategic Health Policy at the Department of Employee Trust Funds. “The expanded service areas and provider networks should fill the gaps created by the departure of WEA Trust from the program.”

The Group Insurance Board approved the following changes effective January 1, 2023:

  • Dean Health Plan will offer the Access Plan and State Maintenance Plan.
  • UnitedHealthcare will offer Medicare Plus.
  • Security Health Plan will be a new plan serving west central Wisconsin with access to the Marshfield Clinic Health System.
  • Common Ground Healthcare Cooperative has partnered with Group Health Cooperative of Eau Claire to serve eastern Wisconsin.
  • GHC of Eau Claire River Region is a new coverage option in west central Wisconsin.
  • Dean Health Plan – Prevea360 West and Mayo Clinic Health System have partnered to serve western Wisconsin.
  • HealthPartners Southeast will provide coverage in southeastern Wisconsin.

ETF will be offering vendor and health benefit webinars during open enrollment, September 26 to October 21, 2022, to assist members in making benefits decisions. Please also see ETF’s Upcoming Health Plan Changes for more information and resources.

ETF News: GIB Approves Premiums and More Plan Choices for Members in 2023 (August 18, 2022)


Frequently Asked Questions About the Departure of WEA Trust

(August 23, 2022)

  1. Why is WEA withdrawing from the health market?

    The challenges related to healthcare consolidation, the costs associated with the global pandemic, and the drop in the stock market have made it difficult for local, not-for-profit organizations like ours who seek to provide families with high value personal care,” stated Vaughn Vance, President and CEO. “It became clear that we had to make the difficult decision to pivot as an organization before we sacrificed what has made WEA Trust unique for many years.”

  2. How does this affect me and my family’s healthcare coverage?

    WEA will remain active for UW employees through December 31, 2022. ETF is currently working with various vendors to secure comparable coverage. Once this has been completed, this will be communicated to employees.

  3. I have the ACCESS plan. Will there be another national plan available?

    As noted above, ETF is currently working to secure comparable coverage for all plans administered by WEA.

  4. Will I have to choose another plan?

    Yes. If you are enrolled in WEA, you will have to select a new plan during Open Enrollment. Once that plan has been secured and the information communicated, action on your part will be required. Open Enrollment begins September 26 and continues through October 21, 2022.

  5. I have some services and treatment plans that were already pre-authorized by WEA. Will the new plan honor this?

    We do not currently have an answer to this. We have communicated this issue to ETF and are waiting on a decision as to how this will be handled.

  6. Will Network Health still be available to UWM employees?

    At this time, we are not aware of any changes to Network Health’s plan availability.

  7. When will we know what other plans will be offered?

    Once ETF has made a decision on a new vendor, we will communicate that information.

  8. Will there be a premium increase?

    We are not aware of any premium increase.

  9. Will there be assistance in helping employees navigate the new plan?

    The UWM Benefits Team is available to assist employees through this process. Please feel free to contact us via email: benefits@uwm.edu, phone: (414) 229-5353, or in person at Engelmann Hall, Room 125, Monday through Friday, between the hours of 8:00 A.M. and 4:00 P.M. Also, walk in assistance will be available throughout the Open Enrollment period, September 26 to October 21, 2022.

  10. Where can I get more information?

    You can contact the UWM Benefits Office or the Wisconsin Department of Employee Trust Funds (ETF). ETF can be reached at (877) 533-5020. Also, below is a link to ETF’s website addressing WEA’s exit.

    ETF Search Results: WEA Exit

  11. What is the plan replacing WEA and the ACCESS plan?
    • Healthpartners will be the plan replacing WEA Trust East.
    • Dean will replace the ACCESS plan.
  12. Will these plans cover the same network of providers?

    Please see: Upcoming Health Plan Changes for the 2023 Plan Year

  13. Will my employee contribution increase?

    There will be a slight increase of 4% for all plans statewide.


◄ Return to News Archive