Dear Aetna Student Health plan enrollees,

The University of Notre Dame honors the moral teachings of the Catholic Church. To comply with federal law, Aetna Student Health has provided coverage, separate from University coverage, for additional women’s health products or procedures that the University objects to based on its religious beliefs.  Recently, President Trump announced an executive order rescinding the mandate for this separate coverage.  The University announced today that the separate coverage accommodation for the faculty/staff plan administered by Meritain will end with its current plan year on December 31, 2017.  Similarly, Aetna has advised that it also will not make changes during the plan year (which runs through August 14, 2018), and will continue to provide coverage for the services.  The coverage provided by Aetna remains separate from Notre Dame.  Please call Aetna customer services at 877-378-9492 with any questions.

Dear Faculty and Staff,


Your 2018 Open Enrollment decision guide included a notice titled: “The Availability of Separate Payments for Contraceptive Services.” This notice outlined a separate contraceptive plan available to University medical plan participants, funded by the federal government through the Affordable Care Act and managed by Notre Dame’s medical plan Third Party Administrator, Meritain Health, and prescription benefit manager, OptumRX.


The separate plan provided no-cost contraceptives and contraceptive services while allowing the University to maintain its religious opposition to the contraceptive mandate of the Affordable Care Act (“the Mandate”). This plan was separate from the University medical plan and was not funded by the University.


The University recently settled its lawsuit challenging the Mandate, following President Trump’s executive order that, among other things, removed the requirement for and funding of the separate coverage. Meritain Health/Optum RX have advised that they will continue to provide contraceptives and contraceptive services to plan members through the remainder of this calendar year at no charge. This will allow members who currently utilize this plan time to make alternative arrangements as they deem appropriate, with no involvement by the University. Members impacted by this change will receive direct communication from Meritain Health/OptumRX that will detail the transition process.


As a reminder, the University’s medical plan will continue to allow prescriptions for contraceptive medications to be filled when there is an appropriate medical necessity as shown by a treating physician. The use of the medication must be for treating a specific medical condition and not as a means of preventing pregnancy. These medications would be subject to standard prescription copayments. Furthermore, University employees may use their personal funds in tax-advantaged Flexible Spending Accounts to obtain covered expenses, as allowed by the Internal Revenue Service. Detailed information about your election options during Open Enrollment can be found at