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Upstate Announcements for December 1, 2022

President Dewan to host holiday gathering

Upstate President Mantosh Dewan will host a holiday gathering Wednesday, Dec. 14 from 4 to 6 p.m. in the ninth-floor cafeteria of Weiskotten Hall. The Upstate community is welcome to attend.



2023 New York state option transfer period opens today 

The New York state option transfer period opens today, Dec. 1 and the deadline for state employees to make changes for their health insurance carrier is Dec. 30. Updated rates are now available.

Employees participating in the New York State Health Insurance Program (NYSHIP) will receive a rates and deadlines publication to home addresses from the Department of Civil Service Employee Benefits Division. The rates will be reflected beginning in check dated Jan. 4, 2023. 

No action is required for those keeping their current health insurance option, if individuals still qualify for that plan. 

To make a change by Dec. 30, submit a signed health insurance transaction form PS-404 to the Upstate HR-Benefits Office, second floor Jacobsen Hall, or fax the completed form to 315-464-4390. For Community, send to Community HR office, first floor, or fax to 315-492-5275.

Selecting a health insurance plan is an important personal decision. Consider family lifestyle, health, budget and benefit preferences. Think about what health care might be required during the next year. The changes for 2023 will be effective Jan. 5, 2023. If changing to a new option, most deduction changes will be effective later in January 2023 and will include retroactive adjustments in a future paycheck. For more information, visit: https://www.upstate.edu/hr/intra/benefits/changing_options_state.php.



Shuttle lot closures

SHA and LC-3 lot closures have been delayed until Jan. 3, due to the availability of shuttles to transport staff from the new open lot.

The new open lot—2721 Erie Boulevard East—was previously Sam’s Club and is located near the current indoor self-storage facility. An update on shuttles available to transport staff from this lot to Upstate will be shared Dec. 15.

A waitlist for the Harrison Garage is open and staff are being relocated by most recent hire date.

For more information, contact the Parking Office at Park@Upstate.edu.



Child Life seeks volunteers in December

Child Life seeks volunteers to prepare and organize donations for the holiday season. Volunteers are sought for two-hour shifts throughout December and must have a current ID Badge. For more information, email Beth Kinsley at kinsleye@upstate.edu.



Pets of Upstate Calendar is available for purchase

The 2023 Pets of Upstate Calendar, featuring the pets of staff from Upstate University Hospital, is available for purchase. The calendar features medical professional recognition dates and a full moon schedule. All proceeds benefit the Nursing Recognition Fund. For more information, email Nrecruit@upstate.edu. To order, visit: https://www.createphotocalendars.com/Store/Pets+of+Upstate+2023+Calendar-9931638833



Covid FAQ is updated for fall/winter season

An updated Covid FAQ for staff and students is available on the Upstate Intranet. The FAQ includes information on what to do if Covid-like symptoms occur, how to test and report, how to return to work, exposure questions, “Covid time,” and how to care for a family member with Covid. To see the full Covid FAQ, visit the Upstate Covid Intranet. Upstate login is required.



Book event with physician author Seema Yasmin is Dec. 6

Upstate’s Health Sciences Library and the Central New York Library Resources Council will host a book discussion with Seema Yasmin, MD, author of Viral BS: Medical Myths and Why We Fall For Them Tuesday, Dec. 6 at 2 p.m. via Zoom. The event is open to the public. The first 200 registrants will receive a copy of the book (if in the continental U.S.). There is no requirement to have read the book prior to the event. More information and registration is available here: https://clrc.org/event/healthclrc-book-talks-viral-bs/. For more information, email Sarah Lawler at lawlersa@upstate.edu or email health@clrc.org.



Kinney Drugs will host Pfizer bivalent Covid booster and flu vaccination clinics at Upstate Dec. 6, 9 and 16 

Kinney Drugs will host Pfizer bivalent Covid booster and flu vaccination clinics at two Upstate locations Dec. 6, 9 and 16. 

The clinics are open to those with a valid Upstate ID. 

The schedule is as follows: 

Upstate staff and students are asked to send photo proof of vaccination documents in a secure message via the Employee/Student Health portal to update vaccination records: https://eshportal.upstate.edu. Proof may also be emailed to ESHealth@Upstate.edu.

Information on Moderna Covid booster clinics at Upstate will be forthcoming.



Administrative Professionals Forum event is Dec. 7

The Administrative Professionals Forum will be held Dec. 7 at 10 a.m. via Zoom. Drs. Robert Corona and Leslie Kohman will present on hospital initiatives and wellness offerings. Amy Green will provide a Microsoft training update. To join, visit: https://upstate.zoom.us/j/98332340620 or use https://upstate.zoom.us/join and enter meeting ID: 983 3234 0620. Join from dial-in phone line: +1 646 876 9923 or +1 646 931 3860 Meeting ID: 983 3234 0620 Participant ID: Shown after joining the meeting. Questions? Email Amy Green at GreenAmy@Upstate.edu.


Upstate offers entrance to Lights on the Lake Dec. 7 and 13

As an official sponsor of this year’s Light on the Lake, Upstate is providing complimentary entrance to Lights on the Lake for individuals with an Upstate ID Wednesday, Dec. 7 or Tuesday, Dec. 13. Only one vehicle entrance per individual. Lights on the Lake is a two-mile drive-thru show featuring towering holiday displays, larger-than life Land of Oz, a twinkling fantasy forest, colorful section arches, memorable animated scenes and a fairy tale magic grand finale. Lights on the Lake hours are 5 to 10 p.m. at Onondaga Lake Parkway, Liverpool. A valid Upstate ID is required.



Schwartz Rounds is Dec. 13

Schwartz Rounds will be held Tuesday, Dec. 13 at noon via Zoom. Annemarie Cristino of Upstate’s Employee Assistance Program will present Remembering a Great Day at Work, Celebrating Small Victories and Telling Light-Hearted Stories: In My Life, I’ve Loved Them All. To join, visit: https://upstate.zoom.us/j/97567513245?pwd=UFk1cFQ2dThiYzl1ZGdONXAzNzhldz09 or go to https://upstate.zoom.us/join and enter meeting ID: 975 6751 3245 and password: 1234. Schwartz Rounds provides a confidential, supportive atmosphere to discuss the social and emotional issues faced when caring for patients and families openly and honestly. Schwartz Rounds helps to improve connections with patients and colleagues by providing greater insight into personal responses and feelings. All staff are welcome. One hour of CME/CE will be given to participants. For more information, email Chaplain Brigid Dunn at dunnbrig@upstate.edu.



Voya webinar is Dec. 13

Understanding Market Volatility will be held Dec. 13 from noon to 1 p.m. online, for all state employees. A Voya representative will discuss what history tells us about the market, Wall Street woes, unpredictable economies, and market prices. To register, visit: https://boblaferriere.timetap.com/#/.



Easy for You is Dec. 13

Easy for You, Upstate's tobacco treatment program, will be held Tuesday, Dec. 13 from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. in 7335B Upstate University Hospital. Everyone with a valid Upstate ID is welcome to receive help quitting tobacco, chew, and vape. Free nicotine replacement therapy is available. For more information, contact Theresa Hankin or Carolyn Walczyk at 315-464-3519 or walczykc@upstate.edu. 



Holiday Toy Drive runs now through Dec. 14

The College of Health Professions will collect new, unwrapped toys for the Salvation Army Christmas Bureau. Donation boxes are located on the first and second floors of the Academic Building. For more information, email Christina Dickerson at DickersonC@Upstate.edu.



Thriving during the holidays is Dec. 19

Upstate’s Employee Assistance Program will offer Thrive Through the Holiday Season Monday, Dec. 19 at 11 a.m. via WebEx. Annemarie Cristino, LCSW, CEAP, will discuss the joys and challenges of preparing for the holiday season. To join, visit: https://upstate.webex.com/upstate/j.php?MTID=meac35c2d21686dd20b4a36b8783d729f (Meeting number: 2313 516 7184 Password: MMkNVcc3T23). For more information, email CristinA@Upstate.edu.


NYSHIP Empire Plan benefit card reissue information

Each year the federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act sets new amounts limiting total network out-of-pocket costs. This federal law requires the inclusion of annual out-of-pocket costs on employee health insurance benefit cards and impacts all NYSHIP plans. The Dept. of Civil Service will issue new Empire Plan benefit cards for all enrollees and covered dependents (this began in mid-November). New benefit cards will also be issued when there is a change to the annual out-of-pocket costs due to collective bargaining. Enrollees can begin using the new benefit cards immediately and securely shred or destroy all other cards. Enrollees do not need to activate this card or place a call to the Department or the Empire Plan administrators prior to use. Contact the Employee Benefits Division at Civil Service with questions at 1-800-833-4344.



The Informed Patient podcast

The Informed Patient features interviews on how breast cancer happens, preserving knee function, blue light and eyesight.

The Informed Patient podcast and HealthLink on Air radio show are produced by Upstate Marketing and University Communications. The Informed Patient interviews are available through various podcast platforms, and HealthLink on Air is broadcast on WRVO Public Media at 6 a.m. Sundays. Audio and transcripts of the podcasts and the radio shows are also available at www.upstate.edu/informed.