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January 25, 2022

PocketPills

As Omicron cases continue to spread across the country, the health of you and your families is more important than ever. PocketPills, Canada’s leading digital pharmacy, can help you get the care you need from the comfort and safety of your own home by easily filling prescriptions online with fast, free delivery.

PocketPills, Canadian and Vancouver-based, is an online pharmacy service that can help manage your medications and the cost of your prescriptions. This is an optional offering that you may select.  Through PocketPills both employers and employees of our plan will see significant savings. With lower costs per prescription, claims amounts will be reduced, resulting in better claims experience and possible future premiums cost-savings.

PocketPills offers:

  • The convenience of filling your prescriptions from the comfort of your home
  • Your medication sorted by dose into easy-to-open packages (PocketPacks)
  • Coordinate with your doctor to renew your prescriptions so you have them on time
  • Fast and free medication delivery, contact-free, across Canada (some restrictions may apply)
  • Low $7 dispensing fee
  • Automatic refills and renewals
  • A team of pharmacists that you can call or text if you have questions
  • In British Columbia, Alberta, and Ontario, you can access their Canadian telehealth network to consult a doctor - just make an appointment and get connected over the phone. Get or renew a prescription online from the comfort of home, and doctors are available 7 days a week. It is fully covered by your provincial health plan, all you need is a valid health card.

PocketPills is a fully optional program. Local pharmacies can be an important resource. If you are satisfied with your current pharmacy, you may continue filling your prescriptions there under the United Church plan.

To facilitate a better user experience, PocketPills is collaborating with Green Shield Canada to provide a streamlined and seamless experience for our members.

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January 17, 2022

Building Better Habits

LifeSpeak

It’s easy to fall into bad habits when our work and lifestyle have been so busy, especially over the holidays. What’s even harder is breaking these bad habits to build better ones. This month, LifeSpeak’s Winter campaign will help you reset your lifestyle this year by Building Better Habits by looking at:

  1. Breaking unwanted habits
  2. Taking good care of yourself
  3. Building new habits
  4. Maximizing resilience

The last couple years have been unlike anything we’ve experienced before. We’ve had so much to manage, it’s no surprise that some of us have slipped into unhealthy habits to cope – but that’s okay! During unprecedented times, we need to be gentle with ourselves, but it’s also good to take a moment to re-evaluate our habits. Which ones are holding us back—and what should we be doing instead?

On January 19 at 12:00 p.m. the Ask the Expert web chat by Tom Toth addresses Finding Time for Fitness.

Check out your LifeSpeak platform now! Log in using the Group Account option. The password is "wellness".

WorkHealthLife

As the worldwide situation remains uncertain, taking care of your own health and wellbeing is more important than ever. If you don’t feel like you have the time for self-care, it’s probably a sign that you need it the most! In this microsite, Building your self-care toolkit, explore why self-care should be part of your routine and how to work it into your daily life, no matter the situation.

There are also plenty of articles on the WorkHealthLife site under the Health & Well-being tab, and don’t forget about the different kinds of support you can access under the My Services tab!

 UCRD

On the topic of self-care, the United Church Bookstore has The Healing Oasis and Return to the Healing Oasis, guided meditation resources for everyone that is designed to connect us with our heart, mind, and soul.

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January 10, 2022

Retiree Benefits

A letter from the General Secretary, Michael Blair, was sent to all retirees on November 22, 2021 that outlined recent discussions and decisions about benefits for retirees of the United Church. You can review the General Secretary's letter here.

If you are a retired member of the United Church and did not receive this communication by email or Canada Post, please contact UCCBenefitsNews@united-church.ca to provide your current information so we can update our records.

 

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January 1, 2022

Health and Dental Benefits for Active Members: Plan Summary

The plan summary for the Health and Dental Benefits for Active Members, effective January 1, 2022, is now posted on the Group Benefits page, under Life, Health and Dental, Disability Benefits. Please note, this plan summary is subject to a final review by external consultants. If you have any questions, please email benefits@united-church.ca. The General Council Office will reopen on January 4, 2022.

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December 13, 2021

Navigating the Holiday Season

LifeSpeak

As 2021 comes to an end, this holiday season might be difficult as we may not have the energy to reflect and be present with others and ourselves.

The LifeSpeak platform has expert-led videos and blog articles to help you navigate the emotions of compassion fatigue, loneliness, as well as stress and sleep. Log in using the Group Account option. The password is "wellness".

Also, on December 15 at 12:00 p.m. EST, join the Ask the Expert web chat with Allison Villa who will address managing expectations and stress with your family members during the holidays.

WorkHealthLife

WorkHealthLife has some great articles this season, like simple pleasures to bring you close as a family over the winter holiday season, and healthy hibernation. You can also check out articles on seasonal affective disorder under their Health & Wellbeing > Mental Health section.

UCRD

Following the WorkHealthLife article on being close with family over the holiday season, the bookstore has Adventures in Faith and Family available in softcover and e-book format. Offering practical, intelligent, loving, and spirit-filled wisdom, this book includes ideas for family holiday activities just in time for the season!

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December 8, 2021

2022 Pension & Benefits Deductions

The 2022 rates are now posted on the Pension and Benefits deductions page. If you have any questions, please email pension@united-church.ca or benefits@united-church.ca

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November 8, 2021

Eating for Optimal Health

A healthy diet throughout life supports normal growth, development and ageing, and reduces the risk of chronic disease leading to overall health and well-being. This month, LifeSpeak’s Expert, Toby Amidor, will share her nutrition tips – in six parts – to fully benefit from the food we eat:

Eating for:

  1. A well-balanced diet
  2. Heart health
  3. Cancer prevention
  4. Healthy bones
  5. A healthy gut
  6. Optimal health: FAQ

Also, LifeSpeak is excited to invite you to discover the all new platform! Find all the same great content that is more user friendly and has an even better user experience. Check out your new LifeSpeak platform now! Log in using the Group Account option. The password is "wellness".

WorkLifeHealth

WorkLifeHealth has a section on Food & Nutrition under the health & well-being, physical well-being headings. You can read articles on:

  • Health eating for busy families
  • Growing older eating wiser
  • Eating healthy – for you and your budget

They also have a section on Nutrition Support, under My Services. Maintaining a healthy, well-balanced diet can be a challenge with a hectic schedule and multiple personal and family demands.  Select the purple “Get started online” button to explore your options.

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November 3, 2021

Canadian Investor Statement on Climate Change

The United Church of Canada Pension Plan joined 34 other institutional investors to sign a Canadian Investor Statement on Climate Change. Collectively, these investors manage more than $5.2 trillion in assets.

Coordinated by the Responsible Investment Association (RIA), the Statement also makes clear the actions major Canadian investors will take to advance the global pursuit of net zero ahead of the most important climate gathering in history – COP26. This includes disclosing their financed emissions and setting an expectation that their investees will establish emissions targets and report on their progress.

Marcus Robertson, Chair of the Pension Board, said, “The Pension Plan has endorsed the Canadian Investor Statement on Climate Change as part of the Plan’s journey to net zero. The Plan has made strides through its engagement efforts, but this significant commitment to net zero by 2050 will require changes to the Plan’s investment strategy, as long-term goals are established, portfolios are adjusted and progress towards those goals is measured.”

RIA worked closely with the Reconciliation and Responsible Investment Initiative (RRII) in the development of the Statement to ensure Indigenous perspectives are incorporated into the Statement. “Despite Indigenous Peoples often being the first and most affected by the climate crisis, Indigenous perspectives and voices are often left out of investors’ decision-making on climate action,” says Mark Sevestre, Founding Member of NATOA. “This raises the stakes of the transition to a low carbon economy for Indigenous Peoples. For the transition to be just in Canada, Indigenous Peoples’ rights and perspectives need to be centred and prioritized.”

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November 3, 2021

Lifestyle Medicine and Breast Cancer Webinar

On Wednesday, December 1st at 2 pm ET join Dr. Timothy Foggin and Dr. Amy Comander for a virtual fireside chat about Lifestyle Medicine and Breast Cancer, understanding the role of lifestyle in cancer development and resources for lifestyle preventions.

During the discussion, Dr. Comander and Dr. Foggin will discuss lifestyle interventions, including exercise, diet, mind/body connections, and:

  • Breast cancer risk factors and the role of genetics
  • The latest evidence regarding lifestyle factors and breast cancer risk reduction
  • The importance of return to screening given delays during the pandemic

Register here to be part of this discussion on Lifestyle Medicine and Breast Cancer.

Dr. Amy Comander is the Director of Breast Oncology and Survivorship at the Mass General Cancer Center in Waltham and Newton Wellesley Hospital and Medical Director of the Mass General Cancer Center in Waltham. Dr. Comander received her MD at Yale University School of Medicine. She completed her Internal Medicine residency and Hematology-Oncology fellowship at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and Harvard Medical School. She is board certified in Hematology and Medical Oncology, as well as in Lifestyle Medicine. She is on the board of the Ellie Fund, which provides support to women with breast cancer in Massachusetts. Dr. Comander has a passion for improving the quality of life and outcome of cancer survivors through lifestyle interventions, including exercise, diet, and mind/body strategies.  She practices what she preaches, having run 8 consecutive Boston Marathons for charitable causes.

Dr. Timothy Foggin is the Medical Director for Canada at Teladoc Health and public health expert. Dr. Foggin completed Med School and his family medicine residency at McGill University in Montreal and his Public Health and Preventive Medicine Residency at UBC in Vancouver. He has worked for Teladoc Health first as the VP and Medical Director of Teladoc Health in Asia and more recently as medical director for Canada. 

 

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Teladoc Health

Register - Lifestyle Medicine and Breast Cancer webinar

November 2, 2021

Additional Information on the Group Benefits Plan Changes

As we try and uphold our commitment to you by providing more information about the Benefits Plan changes, please visit the Group Benefits page, under Life, Health & Dental, Disability Benefits. The formal benefit plan text document is in development and will be published when finalized, so stay tuned. Meanwhile, what you need to know is in the following:

  • FAQ
  • Comparison Chart
  • Benefits Plan Video
  • Benefits Plan Summary (coming soon)
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