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Federal Employees Benefits Q &A

Do you have questions about your federal employee CSRS or FERS pension/annuity or federal employee retirement planning? Concerns about your Thrift Savings Plan (TSP) account or what about federal employee pay and leave issues?

Ask your question here.

The Q&A forum is moderated by Ed Zurndorfer -- an expert on federal employee benefits -- and a Certified Financial Planner, chartered life underwriter and chartered financial consultant in Maryland.

Zurndorfer is also the author of several federal employee benefits guides published by Federal Employees News Digest.

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Leon44  
#1 Posted : Monday, December 04, 2017 2:08:18 PM(UTC)

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Any recommendations on FEDVIP Vision insurance? I never bought it in the past but looks wife and I we'll both need exams, glasses, etc in 2018.
I have BCBS for FEHB's so I may just go with BlueVision.
Ed Zurndorfer  
#2 Posted : Monday, December 04, 2017 6:50:49 PM(UTC)

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Sorry, but this forum does not make specific company health, dental, and vision insurance recommendations.
upandup  
#3 Posted : Monday, December 04, 2017 7:57:56 PM(UTC)

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With vision insurance, the consideration of provider networks is of utmost importance. The out of network benefit is a pittance. Who will give you your eye exam? Where will you get your glasses?

Then, compare the included coverages and lens options. For most people, the high options for vision will be better value than the low options.
Ed Zurndorfer  
#4 Posted : Monday, December 04, 2017 9:41:03 PM(UTC)

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Plato  
#5 Posted : Thursday, December 07, 2017 5:35:07 AM(UTC)
Plato

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Location: Northern Virginia

We've had Blue vision, but thinking Aetna this year, given that they seem more liberal on the frame allowance. Additionally, I just learned Blue is really "Davis Vision," which limits you to their "Collections" collection of frames; you can choose frames not in the collection, but you will be responsible for more than had you of chosen their frames. Aetna is a flat $230 for frames and can choose any frames...or so it seems.

The lens coverage seemed quite comparable, though...both with free annual exams, etc.

I don't wear glasses (though I need them) and my wife primarily uses Blue for contacts. Aetna has a $150 allowance for contacts vs. Blue's $130.

I called the local optometrist my son and I plan to visit asking if they preferred one over the other or if one was more liberal in coverage than the other and similar questions. She confirmed that Blue is Davis Vision and they have a section of just their frames and the rest are color coded, which indicated how much more you would pay out-of-pocket for the non-collection frames.

With regards to Aetna, she said she just doesn't see it that much, so didn't really have any information she could share and offered no preference. I wouldn't think they are new to the vision game, so this raised a flag...sort of.

So I am leaning toward Aetna this year, but haven't had any problems with Blue (have had them for a long time and no problems with my wife getting the full allowance on contacts, exams, etc).


Ed Zurndorfer  
#6 Posted : Friday, December 08, 2017 3:00:34 AM(UTC)

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hawkeye37128  
#7 Posted : Friday, December 08, 2017 12:45:41 PM(UTC)

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You get a 150.00 frame allowance with Blue vision. You do not have to use the Davis collection. Always got nice frames for 150.00 and not choose from the collection.
Ed Zurndorfer  
#8 Posted : Saturday, December 09, 2017 4:16:23 PM(UTC)

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