No Copay/Deductible Changes

March 2, 2012: Providing good news to those state, teacher and municipal retirees it insures, the state’s Group Insurance Commission (GIC) has approved its lowest insurance premium increase since 1999 – just 1.43% across its eleven different plans. Rate changes are effective for Fiscal Year 2013, which begins July 1, 2012.

Of most importance to retirees is the GIC’s Optional Medicare Extension (OME) Plan with CIC coverage, which increased 4.4%. This represents a total monthly premium of $46.76 (90/10), $64.81 (85/15) and $82.86 (80/20) for state retirees.

The OME rate increase is largely the result of a 10% jump in the use of prescription drugs by the plan’s 57,000 subscribers.

Full 2012 Rates For All GIC Plans Will be Contained Within The May 2012 Voice

Retirees, enrolled within UniCare’s Basic Indemnity Plan, will see a 3% increase for both individual and family coverage. UniCare’s Community Choice and Plus plans posted a -4.2% and a -.05 decrees in the monthly rate respectively.

Harvard Pilgrim’s Independence and Primary Choice Plans will see a 0.3% increase and Medicare enrollees a 1% increase. Tufts Complement Medicare Plan will increase 1.8%, while the Preferred plan decreases -6%. Tufts non-Medicare Navigator and Spirit plans will increase just 1.7% and 1.3% respectively.

Fallon’s Select Care and Direct Care plans will increase 3.5% and 1.5%, while their Medicare rates remain unchanged. Health New England enrollees will see a 1.8% increase for the non-Medicare plan. And Neighborhood Health Plan posts the largest increase for FY13 at 6.2%.

Premium contribution rates for municipal retirees and employees, insured under the GIC, are set locally through either coalition bargaining (Section 19) or an agreement reached with a Public Employee Committee (PEC). However, those local retirees insured under the GIC have access to the same insurance plans and coverage as state retirees.

The decision to enroll within the GIC is a local option decision. As of July 1, 2012, 9 cities, 24 towns, 8 Regional School Districts and 4 Planning Councils will have joined the state plan accounting for 56,688 municipal insurance contracts. Rates for local retirees and employees, not insured under the GIC, are established locally.

All told, as of June 30, 2011 the GIC enrolls over 188,000 retired and active employees, accounting for over 350,000 insured lives.