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From the CEO

Welcome to November 2019! As the year ends, we already are planning for the upcoming year. Open Season starts this month – a great time to examine your benefits. Think about adding AFSPA’s dental coverageslife insurances, or disability plans. For stateside members, consider our Discount Care Programs to save on dental, vision, Lasik, and/or hearing aids.

Open Season Activities 
This year’s Open Season starts November 11 and ends December 12. AFSPA staff travel overseas, in preparation for this annual enrollment period. Any direct hire Federal employee who is enrolled or is eligible to enroll in the Federal Employees Health Benefits (FEHB) Program can attend. These briefings offer valuable information on FEHB, FEDVIP, and FSAFEDS to make informed decisions. AFSPA staff also will attend over 70 domestic agency Open Season health fairs this year. If you are in the area nationally or internationally, plan to attend an Open Season event. For information on our upcoming sessions, visit AFSPA’s Facebook page.

Federal employees can choose from a plethora of supplemental insurances. To assist with making dental decisions, consider these points:

  • FEDVIP dental plans cover dependent children up to age 22. AFSPA dental plans cover dependents up to age 26
  • Most FEDVIP plans cover overseas dental services as out-of-network. Processing the itemized bills/receipts requires English translation. AFSPA offers Cigna International that covers services outside the U.S. at a higher benefit. Claims are processed in any language and any currency. Over 100,000 pre-screened network dentists exist, in over 160 countries
  • Enroll in AFSPA dental plans and the discount dental/vision plan (U.S. only) anytime – not just during an Open Season

Learn more at afspa.org/dental.

November is Diabetes Awareness Month 

You don’t get good at dealing with diabetes overnight. But, in time, you have learned to take it in stride. Remember when you were first diagnosed with diabetes – and, when you first learned the basics of taking care of yourself…

  • Make and eat healthy food.
  • Be active most days.
  • Test your blood sugar often.
  • Take medicines as prescribed, even if you feel good.
  • Learn ways to manage stress.
  • Cope with the emotional side of diabetes.
  • Get regular checkups.

Managing diabetes can affect family, work, school, holidays, and everything else. We want to help. Start by identifying what is important to you. Being fit? Having fun? Gaining energy? By taking care of yourself – you can make diabetes a part of life, instead of a life all about diabetes!

Foreign Service Benefit Plan (FSBP) offers diabetes programs to assist:

  • In Touch Care – personal support to help manage chronic conditions, including 1-on-1 calls with a nurse and digital support resources
  • Mediterranean Wellness Program – an interactive on-line, 8-week program that assists you in maintaining a desirable weight and keeping healthy
  • Livongo – a diabetes monitoring program that provides support through a cellular enabled meter, mobile app, and personalized interventions

Click here to find more diabetes resources.

Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is approaching – a time to see family, reflect on good fortune, and recognize how lucky we are to celebrate this American holiday.

We cherish Thanksgiving dinner; however, the traditional foods contain high fat and many calories. This holiday kicks off 6 weeks of overeating that ends on New Year’s Day. However, little changes can make a big difference. Reduce your salt intake, take less mashed potatoes and stuffing, and load up on vegetables. Watch your portion sizes and burn a few calories with an after-dinner walk. Start new healthy traditions. I plan to enjoy the holiday, in moderation – and I’ll do my best to walk off my 2,000-calorie meal.

As Thanksgiving approaches, I want to express my gratitude for your ongoing loyalty. Thank you for your trust and for giving us the opportunity to serve you.

To Your Health,

Paula S. Jakub, RHU
CEO, AFSPA
Executive Director, Senior Living Foundation

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