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SIU member learns the unexpected benefit of Union Plus benefits

Posted on March 22, 2016
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As high health care costs keep working families away from the dentist or vision care provider, Union Plus is fighting back with a Health Savings program that can make health care services more affordable.

With the help of savings on dental care, union member JonDa Tanner was able to land her dream job at sea by allowing her to pass the medical exams.

"Without the Union Plus Health Savings Program*, I wouldn't have my Seafarers International Union (SIU) job," says Tanner, an adventurous SIU member from Seattle, WA.  Tanner explains that the dental discounts available through the Union Plus Health Savings Program allowed her to afford dental work necessary to show that she was in good health, a requirement for the SIU apprentice program to which was applying.

Though not an insurance program, the Union Plus Health Savings Program makes health care services affordable to union members and union retirees through a discount program covering a wide variety of health care needs. Participating union members can enjoy significant discounts on dental, vision, hearing, prescription drugs, and more. Dental discount plans start as low as $5.95 a month. Or combine dental and vision discounts for a plan as low as $6.95 per month.

Moreover, the Union Plus Health Savings Program features an extensive network of providers throughout the country. A full listing of participating providers is available at or by calling 1-877-570-4845.

Tanner, who was drawn to the union movement because of her passionate belief that workers benefit from a collective voice, makes a point of learning what union benefits are available to her union sisters and brothers.

"The Health Savings Program has been great. I've enjoyed savings on dental work and on prescriptions. You really can save a lot of money. I hope other union members take advantage of the savings," says Tanner.

No doubt, Tanner will have a plenty of time to inform her fellow crewmates of the value of unions and the array of union benefits, including those offered by Union Plus, that are available to them. Her job as a cook for about 24 crew members on a cargo or container ship will last from 60 to 142 days per trip. It is a job that gives her the opportunity to travel around the globe, exploring everything from the rare wildlife of Africa to the unique markets of Turkey.

The Union Plus Health Savings program is just one of a wide array of offerings available to union members and retirees.

*THIS PLAN IS NOT INSURANCE and is not intended to replace health insurance. This plan does not meet the minimum creditable coverage requirements under M.G.L. c.111M and 956 CMR 5.00. This plan is not a Qualified Health Plan under the Affordable Care Act. This is not a Medicare prescription drug plan. The range of discounts will vary depending on the type of provider and service. The plan does not pay providers directly. Plan members must pay for all services but will receive a discount from participating providers. The list of participating providers is at A written list of participating providers is available upon request. You may cancel within the first 30 days after receipt of membership materials and receive a full refund, less a nominal processing fee (nominal fee for MD residents is $5, AR and TN residents will be refunded processing fee). Discount Medical Plan Organization and administrator: Careington International Corporation, 7400 Gaylord Parkway, Frisco, TX 75034; phone 800-441-0380.

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