Employee Health Insurance Costs to Increase
The increase that goes into effect in January 2013 ranges from 2 to 9 percent and is needed to offset a projected shortfall; the cost of vision and dental care won't increase.
APS employee health insurance costs will increase by 2-9 percent in January 2013. Employees covered by Presbyterian will see a 2 percent rate increase. Employees covered by Lovelace will see an increase of between 8 and 9 percent depending on their plan. Those covered by Lovelace will see a higher increase because their premium will be raised to match Presbyterian’s. Currently, those covered by Lovelace pay as much as $15 less per paycheck than those covered by Presbyterian.
The total health insurance increase will range from between about $1 and $20 per paycheck depending on the employee’s medical plan and salary.
Why Health Care Premiums are Rising
The APS Board of Education approved the increase at its Sept. 19 meeting to help offset a projected $8.7 million shortfall for 2013, the result of soaring health care costs and increased claims. More than 17,000 employees and their dependents are covered by the district’s health insurance programs. The cost of medical insurance has increased nationally on average between 9-12 percent.
Biometric Screenings and Personal Health Profiles
For the past two years, health insurance costs for the majority of APS employees insured through the district have not increased. APS managed to keep health insurance costs down by encouraging employees and their spouses/domestic partner to participate in biometric health screenings and/or complete a personal health survey. The APS Employee Wellness Incentive Program has saved employees as much as $480 per year.
Employees and spouses/domestic partners are once again encouraged to complete a health screening and personal health survey by Sept. 30 to keep medical plan contributions from increasing an additional $20 a month for individuals or $40 a month for employees with spouses/domestic partners insured through the district.
Health Benefit Rate Increases
The increase in health insurance premiums for 2013 will vary depending on the health plan and income level of the employee.
Rates for vision and dental care will not increase in 2013.
For employees who earn $29,000 or more a year and who have completed the health screening and online survey:
- The increase will be $1.68/paycheck for an individual covered by the Presbyterian High Option Plan
- The increase will be $4.53/paycheck for families covered by the Presbyterian High Option Plan
- The increase will be $6.66 for an individual covered by the Lovelace High Option Plan
- The increase will be $20.14/paycheck for those covered by the Lovelace High Option Plan
For employees who earn less than $29,000 a year and who have completed the health screening and online survey:
- The increase will be about $1/paycheck for an individual covered by the Presbyterian High Option Plan
- The increase will be $2.26/paycheck for families covered by the Presbyterian High Option Plan
- The increase will be $3.33 for those covered by the Lovelace High Option Plan
- The increase will be $10.06/paycheck for those covered by the Lovelace High Option Plan
Deductibles for all low-option plans will double.
In addition to the rate increase, co-payments for some services also will increase. Those services include:
- Urgent care visits – from $40 to $50
- Specialist visits – from $35 to $40
- Outpatient surgery – from $100 to $250
- Emergency room visits – from $120 to $150
- Advanced radiology – from $60 to $100
- Brand drugs minimum/maximum co-pay increase of $5
- Specality drug co-pay increase of from $90 to $100 (out of pocket maximum increased from $750 to $1,000).
Employees interested in changing their health care coverage may do so during open enrollment Oct. 24-30. For more information, click here.
Employees who have questions or concerns about their health insurance or other benefits may contact Employee Benefits at 889-4859 or.