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Leave for Cancer Screening

State employees will soon be able to take paid leave for up to four hours without charge to leave credits for screening of all cancers. Previously, Civil Service Law allowed state employees to take paid leave without charge to leave credits specifically for breast and prostate cancer screening. The new provision will take effect on March 18, 2018.

Cancer screening includes physical exams, blood work or other laboratory tests for the detection of cancer. Travel time is included the four-hour cap. Absence beyond the four-hour cap must be charged to leave credits.

Leave for cancer screening is not cumulative and expires at the close of business on the last day of each calendar year.

Pharmacists Can Administer Flu Vaccine to Children
On January 25, 2018, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo signed an executive order to combat the flu epidemic in New York. The executive order allows pharmacists to administer flu vaccines to children ages 2 to 18, increasing access and convenience for New Yorkers seeking the flu vaccination as the number of reported cases across the state continues to rise. Over the past week, 7,779 laboratory confirmed influenza cases were reported to the state and 1,759 New Yorkers have been hospitalized with confirmed influenza, the highest weekly numbers in both categories since reporting began in 2004 and surpassing last week’s previous high of 1,606 hospitalizations.

Children ages 6 months through 8 years may require 2 doses, one to prime the immune system, and the second to provide protection. For Empire Plan enrollees, Caremark ran claims using a child’s date of birth to verify that coverage is in place, and that the second vaccine would not reject in the event a child would need to receive 2 doses. Caremark also confirmed pharmacists will have access to emergency supplies in the event of an allergic reaction, and must comply with NYS requirements that include reporting adverse reactions and the number of times epinephrine was administered.

What is IRS Form 1095-C?

To comply with federal Affordable Care Act (ACA) provisions, New York state is required to send IRS tax form 1095-C to all full-time employees, enrollees in The Empire Plan or NYSHIP HMOs, as well as retirees who are not enrolled in Medicare. Form 1095-C presents data to be provided to the IRS by the state as proof of qualifying health insurance coverage for 2017.

Federal law requires that Form 1095-C be sent to all employees who meet the ACA’s definition of a full-time employee. This is generally defined as individuals who work at least 30 hours per week or 130 hours per month. In addition to full-time employees, the state will also send Form 1095-C to any other individuals who were enrolled in The Empire Plan or the Student Employee Health Plan (SEHP) for all or a portion of 2017. If you were enrolled in a Health Maintenance Organization (HMO) for all or a portion of 2017, you may receive a similar form, Form 1095-B, from your HMO as well.

Individuals who are enrolled in Medicare or who provide coverage to any dependents enrolled in Medicare should note that enrollment information for Medicare enrollees will not appear on Form 1095-C. You may receive a separate Form 1095-B from Medicare for these individuals.

Once you receive Form 1095-C, review it for accuracy and retain it with your tax records. You do not need to return the form to New York state, and it does not need to be filed with your federal or state income tax return. If any of the information contained on your Form 1095-C is inaccurate, call the telephone number on the upper right corner of the form to correct any errors.

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