How to get Wellness Reward

Useful Links, Contacts

Wellness/Tobacco Pledge FAQs

Medical Website

UAMS SmartCare 
(501) 686-8749

Get Healthy UAMS (intranet)

UA System Website

The goal of the wellness program is to improve the health of employees by encouraging them to build relationships with primary care physicians, utilize wellness and preventive exams, and reduce tobacco use.   This page only applies to employees who are enrolled in one of the University’s three medical plans.  It does not apply to covered family members. 

What will I need to do in 2020 to receive my wellness incentive reward in 2021? 

(1) Take the Tobacco Pledge again in the fall, during open enrollment.  Specific dates for you to renew your pledge will be announced.   You’ll log into ESS, UAMS Employee Self Service, to do this. If you attest that you don’t use tobacco, or that you will participate in a cessation program if you do use tobacco, you will gain two benefits:  no tobacco surcharge in 2021, plus you’ll be eligible for the wellness reward if you also complete step 2.

(2) NEW!!   The step to visit your PCP for your annual wellness visit is waived this year, as health providers are focused on COVID-related care. The only requirement to receive the 2021 wellness reward is to take the tobacco pledge in fall 2020 and indicate you are either a non-user, or a user who will enroll in a cessation program.  We expect the PCP visit requirement will be restored in the future. Visit your primary care provider for a qualified wellness program office visit.  This visit must be within the dates November 1, 2019 and October 31, 2020.   A qualified visit must be with an in-network primary care physician, advanced practice nurse or other licensed health care provider.  The visit must be coded by your provider as a “wellness visit” to qualify.  Confirm the correct coding with your provider.  UMR will use your claims data to determine if you completed your visit – there’s nothing for you to submit or report. Annual wellness visits are covered in full under our medical plan as preventive care; you pay $0.  NOTE:  This step only applies to employees who are covered as of 6-30-2020.   New employees and others whose coverage starts July 2020 or later only have to complete the tobacco pledge in order to gain the 2021 wellness reward.  

Not sure if your PCP visit is a qualified wellness exam?   Log into UMR to check.  After you log in, select “Check your wellness activities” to open up that site.  Then click the “More” button under “Track your progress.”   It will show a check beside “Qualified Wellness Visit” if you’ve completed that step.  Ignore the blank beside “Tobacco/Nicotine Pledge and Notice” as UAMS and UA Fayetteville employees do not complete the tobacco pledge on UMR’s website.   Instead our employees take the pledge on our own employee self-service systems. We will then report that data to UMR in early December so that UMR can determine if you’ve completed the required steps for the 2021 wellness reward.

What is the reward?    It depends on which medical plan you have:

Classic Plan:   reduction in your maximum medical out-of-pocket cost by $1400 single, $2800 family
Premier Plan:  reduction in your maximum medical out-of-pocket cost by $500 single, $1000 family
Health Savings Plan:  an additional $90 University of Arkansas employer contribution to your HSA

Tobacco Surcharge 

In support of the University’s tobacco-free efforts, a monthly $50 tobacco surcharge ($23.08 if paid biweekly) will be charged to you if you are enrolled in the medical plan and:

  • You do not complete the Tobacco Pledge, or
  • You do not certify your enrollment in a tobacco cessation program, or
  • You elect to continue to use tobacco.

If you are assessed the surcharge, you will pay it with after-tax payroll deductions. The surcharge will be deducted from your pay.  It will be a separate deduction, not an addition to your medical insurance premium.

You may choose to participate in a tobacco-free/tobacco cessation program to avoid the tobacco surcharge without completing an annual wellness exam and without earning the wellness incentive.  In other words, take the tobacco pledge –which is really a tobacco-free pledge — to avoid the surcharge.  Then if you also have a qualified wellness exam by Oct. 31, you’ll also get the wellness reward.

The surcharge will apply for the entire calendar year.  However, you may have a mid-year “do over” opportunity to submit an updated Tobacco Pledge.  If you do so, and you check the box that qualifies you as a non-tobacco user (either because you are a non-user or because you commit to enrolling in a cessation program), you won’t be charged the surcharge starting with the first pay period in July and through December.  An announcement with specific dates will be made in the spring to those paying the surcharge.

Remember, you will need to re-take the Tobacco Pledge annually each fall.