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Classified Benefits & Wellness Newsletter March 2016 Issue #5

Wellness Clinic Closed Spring Break
The 4J Wellness Clinic will be closed March 21, 2016 through March 25, 2016.  Regular clinic hours, which will resume March 28, 2016, are Monday through Friday, from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. The clinic is closed for lunch from 1:00-2:00 p.m.  If you need a prescription refilled over spring break, please plan ahead.

Outsmarting Winter Blues
If you experience seasonal affective disorder (SAD), depression linked to less sunlight, try cognitive-behavioral therapy.  Studies find it more effective at easing and preventing SAD than light exposure.

Get on Board! The Classified Professional Education Program (PEP) Train
Want to be more motivated, skilled and effective?  Want to increase your individual contribution to work and life?  Ongoing support training is essential to keep up with changes to our work environment.  Our classified PEP funds allow each of us to customize our learning to fit our job needs exactly, adapting some elements and omitting any considered unnecessary for the job.

Take advantage of this each year!  The program allows for reimbursement for job-related training activities, tuition reimbursement, registration or material costs, and conferences and workshops.  Program rules allow one request per fiscal (school) year, up to $300 for workshops, classes, books or other expenses related to professional development.  Requests are processed on a first-come, first-served basis until funds run out.   PEP fund requests can be found on the HR website: http://www.4j.lane.edu/hr/forms/

Send completed forms to:

PEP Fund, Ed Center Attn.: Diana McElhinney

Having trouble finding a PEP fund form?  Give me call at x7679, or e-mail mcelhinney_d@4j.lane.edu

Need Some Ideas & Suggestions?
Computer Software Classes at www.trainerdeb.com
Fred Pryor Seminars:  www.pryor.com
Find a Seminar: www.findaseminar.com
Language classes * Training videos * Resource books

Note:  Travel & Lodging are not reimbursable.

Weight Watchers vs. Medical Weight Loss Clinics for Eligible OEBB Members

Weight Watchers incorporates healthy eating, physical activity, behavior modification, and for those who attend meetings, a supportive atmosphere. Anyone enrolled in an OEBB medical plan can enroll in their first 13-week session at NO COST either with At Work Meetings, Community Meetings, or OnlinePlus. Those who maintain participation requirements could qualify for up to four 13- week sessions per plan year.  To learn more or enroll, call 1-800-651-6000.

Medical Weight Loss Clinics help you reduce weight through a combination of methods and professional staff address the needs of the patient on an individual case-by-case basis.  Some of the options here in our Eugene/Springfield area are Monarch Medical, Absolute Health, and Metabolic Research. Moda insurance may cover the costs of these programs, but remember that your deductibles and co-pays may apply.  Before signing up, contact Moda Customer Service at 1-866-923-0409 to verify coverage.
Other OEBB Member Wellness Resources

OEBB Fitness Rewards:  Effective October 1, 2015, OEBB’s new Fitness Rewards program will reimburse eligible members up to $15 per month for exercising at a qualified facility. For more information visit: http://www.oregon.gov/oha/OEBB/Pages/OEBB-Fitness-Rewards.aspx

Better Choices, Better Health – Managing Chronic Conditions:  an online self-management course developed to assist people in dealing with problems associated with chronic medical conditions.  For more information visit: https://oebb.enroll.selfmanage.org/

MoodHelper – Depression Management: an online program for adults to help manage depression.  For more information visit:  www.MoodHelper.org (Invitation Code: OEBB227)

Quit for Life – Tobacco Cessation: resources to help you quit tobacco.  Call 1-866-784-8454 or learn more online: www.QuitNow.net

Healthy Team Healthy U – Team-Based Wellness is an innovative program proven to help participants lead a healthier life.  Learn more or sign up at:  www.OEBB.hthu.com

When life gives you lemons, make lemonade…..

                        …..with Splenda.

 

1 in 3 American Adults has Prediabetes
With a little exercise and a change in diet, it can be reversed.  Let’s face it; there are millions of reasons why we don’t find the time to make healthy lifestyle choices.  Kids, jobs, cat videos on the Internet – we’re busy. But whatever your reason, prediabetes is real.  So find out if you have prediabetes by taking this quick and easy finger test now (it will only take a minute) You won’t regret it.

The Pre-Diabetes Finger Test

Pre-diabetes Question #1: Are you a man or a woman? Men are more likely than women to have undiagnosed diabetes; one reason may be that they are less likely to see their doctor regularly. So if you are a man hold up one finger, zero if you are a woman.
Pre-diabetes Question #2: Do you have a father, mother, sister or brother with diabetes? A family history of diabetes could contribute to your risk for type 2 diabetes. If type 2 diabetes runs in your family hold up a finger.
Pre-diabetes Question #3: Have you ever been diagnosed for high blood pressure? Having high blood pressure contributes to your overall risk for type 2 diabetes. If you have high blood pressure, hold up one finger
Pre-diabetes Question #4: How old are you? The older you are, the higher your risk for type 2 diabetes. If you’re over 60 hold up three fingers; over 50 hold up two fingers; over 40 hold up one finger.
Pre-diabetes Question #5: Are you physically active? Being inactive can raise your risk for type 2 diabetes. If you’re inactive, just sitting on the couch all day, hold up one finger.
Pre-diabetes Question #6: What is your weight status? If you are overweight, hold up two fingers; if you are obese, hold up three fingers.

If you’re holding up five or more fingers then you’re at an increased risk for pre-diabetes. As it turns out, one in three people are going to score five or more fingers. So if you raised five or more fingers it’s time to go see your doctor to determine if your blood sugar is high. If it is, the good news is that being pre-diabetic is reversible by following specific health advice such as changing your diet, increasing your amount of physical activity, and losing as little as 5 percent of your weight.

Reference: ABC Good Morning America “New Prediabetes Campaign Raises Awareness in Quick Test”

 

Home Cooking Cuts Diabetes Risk
In a study of more than 99,600 people, those who ate 11 or more homemade lunches and dinners per week had a 12 percent lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes than those who ate six or fewer home-prepared meals weekly.  Home-cooked meals are usually lower in calories, fat, and sodium, and contain more nutrient-and fiber-rich produce and whole grains than restaurant fare, fast food, and takeout.
Source: Presented at the American Heart Association’s Scientific Sessions, November 2015. 


Retirement Planning

Retirement planning is not something that can be done in a day, a week, or even a month. The best plans are the ones that provide enough flexibility to allow us to make changes as the need for doing so becomes evident.

To achieve this kind of flexibility and to come out with the best series of investments to help you achieve your goals, it is good to work with a retirement planner to make the process simpler and to help expose you to ideas and investments you might not be aware of. Retirement planning can be a difficult and sometimes mysterious process, but professional planning can make the process a whole lot simpler.

Ready to Retire?  Please allow yourself plenty of preparation time. If you are considering retirement sometime this spring or at the end of the school year, there are three steps you’ll need to take:  contact PERS to begin your Service Retirement process, notify your supervisor, and then contact me to learn about your 4J benefits.

To get advice regarding your PERS retirement, you will need to work with your financial planner or directly with PERS.  4J does not give PERS advice.   The phone number for PERS is 1-888-320-7377.  Their website is http://oregon.gov/PERS/.  You can find a great deal of information on the PERS website, and can download forms and sign up for education sessions as well.

Retirement Planning Mistake:  Saving too little.
The Solution: 403(b) Retirement Savings. Start now and automatically increase contributions every chance you get. The District will make a monthly District-paid tax- sheltered annuity (TSA) contribution in the amount of 1.25% of your monthly gross wages as long as you contribute at least.625% of your gross wages.

Every Classified employee is eligible for this additional retirement benefit.   3 easy steps:  Set up a TSA account with one of the three authorized vendors below.  Complete a District 4J Salary Reduction Agreement, and then deliver to Financial Services at the Education Center.

4J Authorized Vendors (in alphabetical order):

American Century Investments: 1-800-345-3533
VALIC: Colin McDonnell – 541-912-7251 or
Kathy Arendsen – 541-954-1602
Voya:  Elle Brooks – 541-343-2928 or
John Van Ravenhorst – 541-343-2928
For additional information visit the 4J website at: http://www.4j.lane.edu/hr/benefits/403btsa/


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This newsletter is reviewed and edited each month by the District 4J and OSEA representatives of the Classified Joint Benefits Committee (JBC).The information in this newsletter is summarized, and is not intended as advice or counsel.

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