Health insurance available for part-time employees through Affordable Care Act

Under the federal Affordable Care Act, Penn State employees who work an average of at least 30 hours per week may be eligible for health insurance. Credit: Freeimages.comAll Rights Reserved.

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Part-time Penn State employees who work an average of 30 hours per week or more may now be eligible for University health care coverage under the federal Affordable Care Act (ACA).

Employees who averaged 30 hours per week or more during a nine-month period between Jan. 15 to Oct. 14 this year are eligible for coverage under the ACA.

Penn State employees who meet the 30-hour requirement should receive a letter from the Office of Human Resources outlining health plan options for themselves and their dependents.

Susan Basso, vice president for human resources, said Penn State will offer affordable health care insurance to more than 300 part-time employees.

“We see it as an investment to sustain a segment of our workforce that’s critical to the University’s operation,” she said.

Providing coverage to variable-hour employees could cost up to $5.8 million in the coming year. Basso said Penn State’s subsidy for individual and family coverage goes beyond the minimal amount required by law, allowing employees to pay an affordable percentage of the cost.

For 2016, the University will determine an employee’s eligibility for coverage through a standard measurement period between Oct. 15 and Oct. 14. This measurement will continue every year.

The University has been working on implementing the ACA since its inception in 2010. Over the past 18 months, the Office of Human Resources has consulted with the Faculty Senate benefits committee, the staff advisory committee, human resources representatives and President Eric Barron’s health care advisory committee regarding the complex employer responsibility provision of the ACA.

Basso said those groups provided valuable feedback to help guide University leadership to their ultimate decision to offer comprehensive, affordable health care coverage to those who meet the eligibility criteria.

More information on Penn State and the ACA can be found at

Variable hour, part-time employees who believe they qualify for ACA coverage but do not receive a letter should contact the Employee Benefits Division at

Last Updated December 05, 2014