Tag Archives: optum

Resources for California Wildfire Victims

Our hearts go out to our Union brothers and sisters who have been affected by the recent wildfires, and we wanted to share several resources that are available to them.


Optum is offering a free emotional support help line for all people impacted. This help line will provide those affected access to specially trained mental health specialists. The company’s public toll-free help line number, 866-342-6892, will be open 24 hours a day, seven days a week for as long as necessary. This service is free of charge and open to anyone. Specially trained Optum mental health specialists help people manage their stress and anxiety so they can continue to address their everyday needs. Callers may also receive referrals to community resources to help them with specific concerns, including financial and legal matters.

Along with the toll-free help line, emotional-support resources and information are available online at www.liveandworkwell.com. View the Important Communications alert on liveandworkwell.com near the bottom of the member home page for local resources.

You can find the following resource centers by using a keyword search on liveandworkwell.com

·         Disaster Planning & Recovery Center: Type the keyword “disaster” into the search bar, select the Disaster Planning & Recovery Center. Here you’ll find information on preparing for and recovering from natural disasters and links to national organizations too.

·         Coping Center: Type the keyword “coping” into the search bar, select Coping. Here you’ll find articles, guides, self-help tools and videos on coping with stress.

Optum covered members (EAP and behavioral health customers) continue to have their ongoing resources including Critical Incident Response Services (CIRS). We recommend they access through their account-specific support numbers. Emotional-support resources and information are also available online at www.liveandworkwell.com.

Members of the film and television community in Southern California affected by the wildfires can contact MPTF at (323) 634-3888 for assistance. 

Union Plus
If you are a union member who participates in certain Union Plus programs and have been affected, you may be eligible for financial assistance through the Union Plus Disaster Relief Grant program. The Union Plus Disaster Relief Fund has provided nearly $1 million in assistance to union members facing hardship following floods, wildfires and other natural disasters. Head to the Union Plus Disaster Relief Fund page to learn more about the benefits and eligibility requirements.


Financial relief is available for IATSE members affected by the fire through the Walsh/Di Tolla/Spivak Foundation. IATSE members in need of assistance should submit a written request to Local 839. Local unions will then forward any requests to the Walsh/Di Tolla/Spivak Foundation for review by the Foundation’s trustees. Please email us at membership@tag839.org with any questions.

We also encourage IATSE members who are not directly affected by the fire to donate to the Walsh/Di Tolla/Spivak Foundation. Money from the Foundation helps pay for shelter, food, clothing, and other necessities to help our affected IATSE sisters and brothers get through this difficult time.

Checks should be made payable to the “Walsh/Di Tolla/Spivak Foundation” and mailed to:

The Walsh/Di Tolla/Spivak Foundation c/o IATSE
207 W. 25th St., 4th Fl.
New York, NY 10001

Entertainment Community Fund
Entertainment Community Fund (formerly The Actors Fund) provides information for disaster relief on their website.

Grief Counseling and Help

The Animation Guild is here to assist you in finding the help you might need during times of grief through the Motion Picture Industry Health Plan.

Most members are enrolled in the Anthem Blue Cross PPO. Under this plan, mental health benefits are carried through Optum. In-network providers have a $5 copay. You can search for in-network providers on Optum’s website—liveandworkwell.com—with Access Code MPIPHP.

Be sure to check with the provider to ensure they are in the Optum network before scheduling an appointment. If they accept Employee Assistance Program (EAP) benefits, you can receive five free sessions by requesting an EAP letter at 888-661-9141 or through liveandworkwell.com.

Out-of-network providers are covered at approximately 50 percent of the cost. Many therapists accept Optum but be sure to confirm before making an appointment, and submit claims through liveandworkwell.com. For more information, contact Optum at 888-661-9141.

PsychologyToday.com is a valuable search tool when looking for out-of-network counseling.

Under the Kaiser HMO, in-network individual therapy sessions have a $15 copay. In-network group therapy sessions have a $7 copay. Out-of-network providers are not covered. You do not need prior authorization from your primary care physician to receive mental health services at Kaiser facilities.

You can search for in-network providers by visiting kp.org/mentalhealth or by calling Kaiser member services at 800-464-4000.

Under the HealthNet HMO, mental health benefits are run through Manage Health Network (MHN). In-network Individual therapy sessions have a $15 copay. In-network group therapy sessions have a $7.50 copay. Out-of-network providers are not covered. You do not need prior authorization from your primary care physician to receive mental health services. To search for in-network therapists, visit mhn.com or contact MHN at 888-926-5133.

If you’re unsure what plan you are registered with, or if you have any other health insurance questions, you can contact MPIPHP at 855-275-4674 or visit their website at mpiphp.org.

The Animation Guild office is also available to answer any questions you might have, either by phone at 818-845-7500 or by emailing membership@tag839.org.


Are you eligible for OPTUM services?

OPTUM is a program offered through the Motion Picture Industry Pension and Health Plan that includes behavioral health, Member Assistance Program (MAP) and WorkLife services. You only have access to OPTUM if you have chosen MPI PPO as your healthcare provider. If you currently have Kaiser,  you DO NOT have access to OPTUM and must use Kaiser as your mental health provider.

For those who do have access to OPTUM, it’s important to know what benefits are available to you and those in your household.

What is MAP?

The Member Assistance Program (MAP) is a suite of services offered to anyone living in your household (not just your dependents) aimed to help you overcome challenges, reach your goals and live your best life. Confidential support is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Benefits include:

  • Financial Assistance: Estate planning, debt reduction, bankruptcy, retirement planning and more. You and everyone in your household is eligible for one telephone consultation (30-60 minutes in length) per issue per year.
  • Legal Services: Consumer issues, IRS matters, separation and divorces, traffic issues, etc. You and everyone in your household is eligible for one free 30-minute consultation (in person or over the telephone) per issue per year plus ongoing representation at a 25% discounted rate. Visit liveandworkwell.com and sign in or browse with access code: MPIPHP. Once you’ve entered the access code, it will take you to a new home page. At the top you’ll see a series of dropdown menus, click on Financial & Legal, then click again on Legal. Scroll to the bottom of the page and you will find the highlighted benefits.
  • Mediation Services: Child custody, collections, contractual disputes, tenant/landlord issues and more. You and everyone in your household is eligible for one free 30-minute consultation (in person or over the telephone) per issue per year plus ongoing representation at a 25% discounted rate.
  • Counseling: You and your dependents have access to five free counseling sessions for each problem every year. A MAP specialist can refer you to a network clinician. This service is a good option for addressing short-term challenges. For longer term needs, a $5 co-pay will be collected after the initial five free visits and there is no limit to the number of sessions per year.

OPTUM vets all legal providers through CLC, a leading provider of legal and financial programs for Employee Assistance (EA) organizations, membership associations, insurance companies and national marketing entities throughout the United States. For additional help with legal services call 866-248-4094.

You can access MAP by visiting liveandworkwell.com and using the access code mpiphp. Click on the appropriate tab at the top of the page.

What can I find on the liveandworkwell.com site?

The website serves as a useful resource, not only to access other OPTUM services, but to educate yourself on various health and wellness subjects. You’ll find more than 5,000 articles, podcasts, webinars and newsletters, plus databases on childcare, eldercare, schools and colleges and more. The site also houses tools for budgeting, a retirement planner, will kits, and customizable plans for reducing stress, quitting smoking and other goals. And, of course, the site allows you to find an in-network clinician and review credentials and certifications.

What are the WorkLife services?

Looking for a contractor? Who needs Angie’s List? The WorkLife services allow you to ask for referrals—OPTUM does the research for you and sends you a list of options. These services are varied, and include:

  • Adult/Elder Services: Long distance caregiving, Medicare support, aids to daily living, etc.
  • Child/Parenting Services: Camps, childbirth professionals, child care, child development experts, etc.
  • Life Learning: College selection, financial aid, music and dance classes, career consulting, etc.
  • Chronic Condition Support: Medical suppliers, nutrition assistance, special housing, etc.
  • Convenience Services: Dining, entertainment, household needs, shopping, etc.

What services are offered for substance abuse?

Specialized substance use recovery advocates are available 24/7 at 855-780-5955 and through live chat at liveandworkwell.com and receive immediate provider referrals, including identifying local, in-network facilities, if necessary. OPTUM has also recently rolled out online Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy.

What is TalkSpace?

TalkSpace is an app that can be used as an alternative or in addition to face-to-face therapy. A digital provider matching tool gives you access to more than 4,000 licensed providers across the United States. You can send texts, audio or video messages and receive responses daily, five days a week. Or you can schedule real-time video sessions as needed. With the app, you can begin therapy within hours of selecting a provider.

What if I want to see an out-of-network therapist?

You are eligible to seek services from an out-of-network provider; however, you will only receive partial coverage of the services. Additionally, most out-of-network providers will ask you to pay upfront and you will need to request repayment by submitting an OPTUM claim.