Benefits

Premiums to Rise 7.3 Percent in Federal Employees Health Program

By Staff Report

Oct. 4, 2010

Health insurance premiums for the program that covers federal employees and retirees will increase an average of 7.3 percent next year, according to the U.S. Office of Personnel Management.


The increase for the Federal Employee Health Benefits Program—the nation’s largest group plan that covers about 8 million people—is about the same as this year.


Like the private sector, the federal program also will expand coverage next year to meet mandates in the new health reform law. Those enhancements will boost premiums an average of 1.7 percent and are included in the overall 7.3 percent increase, the agency says. That is in line with increases that private sector employers are expecting as a result of the health reform law.


The requirements include extending coverage to employees’ adult children up to age 26 and full coverage of preventive care and services.


The average 7.3 percent premium increase for federal employees, though, is somewhat less than increases private sector employers are expecting. A Hewitt Associates Inc. analysis has projected an 8.8 percent average increase in 2011 based on a study of health plans sponsored by 325 large employers.


An Office of Personnel Management question-and-answer sheet says the federal program “uses private-market competition and consumer choice to provide comprehensive benefits at an affordable cost to enrollees and the government.” In addition, the agency said, “We use firm negotiations with health carriers to keep cost increases as reasonable as possible.”


Next year, just over 200 health plans will be offered to federal employees and retirees, about the same as this year. Many plans, though, operate only in specific geographic areas.


Federal employees, who can make their 2011 health plan selections between Nov. 8 and Dec. 13, on average pay 30 percent of the premium, while the federal government picks up the remaining 70 percent.  


Filed by Jerry Geisel of Business Insurance, a sister publication of Workforce Management. To comment, e-mail editors@workforce.com.


 


Stay informed and connected. Get human resources news and HR features via Workforce Management’s Twitter feed or RSS feeds for mobile devices and news readers.

About Workforce.com

blog workforce

We build robust scheduling & attendance software for businesses with 500+ frontline workers. With custom BI reporting and demand-driven scheduling, we help our customers reduce labor spend and increase profitability across their business. It's as simple as that.

Book a call
See the software

Related Articles

workforce blog

Benefits

EEOC says that employers legally can offer incentives to employees to get vaccinated in almost all instances

If you’re an employer looking to get as many of your employees vaccinated as possible, you can rest eas...

ADA, CDC, COVID-19, EEOC, GINA, pandemic, vaccinated

workforce blog

Benefits

Fixing some common misconceptions about HIPAA

Ever since the CDC amended its COVID-19 guidance to say that the fully vaccinated no longer need to wea...

COVID-19, health care, HIPAA, human resources, wellness

workforce blog

Benefits

We are in the midst of a public mental health crisis; how employers can help

Do not ignore these issues or your employees who are living with them. Mental health illnesses are no d...

ADA, benefits, Coronavirus, FMLA, mental health, paid time off