March 31, 2003
TO:     Participants and Beneficiaries of the NAS Metal Trades Welfare Fund

FROM:   Michael W. Jacobson, Fund Administrator

RE:     Important Information about New Federal Privacy Regulations

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has issued regulations establishing strict standards on how health plans, like the NAS Metal Trades Welfare Fund, may use and disclose your medical records. These regulations will go into effect on April 14, 2003, and they will affect some of your dealings with the Fund Office. We recognize that the requirements of the new Privacy Rules may be an inconvenience to you. However, the Fund Office and the Trustees are doing everything possible to minimize the burden on you.

What do the privacy regulations require?

In general, the regulations require the Fund to secure all medical information so that it is not readily accessible or available to those who do not need access to it. Unfortunately, while the rules let us discuss your medical information with you, we will no longer be able to discuss your information with anyone else (even your spouse) unless you specifically authorize the Fund to do so. (There is an exception in the Rules allowing parents to obtain information from us concerning their minor children.)

How do I authorize my spouse or someone else to assist me in dealing with the Fund Office?

An Authorization Form is enclosed. It is also available from the Fund office and will be available on the Fund's website: http://www.nasifund.org. The Authorization Form may be copied if more than one person in your family wishes to use it now. You may send the completed Authorization Form to the Fund Office by mail or facsimile at (301) 429-4783. Once properly authorized by you, the Fund Office is permitted to disclose information about you to whomever you have designated. Of course, you do not need to grant access to your private medical information to anyone in order to receive full benefits from the NAS Metal Trades Welfare Plan. Your doctor's office will still be able to submit claims as usual and communicate with the Fund office as usual.

The Privacy Rules are detailed. Enclosed is a Notice that explains the Rules in more detail.

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