Health Premiums: They could be sooo much worse!

If you think your federal health insurance premiums are high (and they are) imagine what they would be if Uncle Sam didn’t kick in his share.

Although most people realize the government picks up part of the premium, a lot of people don’t realize what a difference that makes. Example:

Next year, feds who buy the Kaiser standard family health plan, or the APWU consumer driver health plan will pay $2,140 in premiums. But if they had to pay the full freight, sans government contribution, they would be out a total of $10,830 for the same plans, same coverage.

The NALC value plan and the GEHA standard family plan are rated as top value by Consumer CHECKBOOK’s Guide to Health Plans for Federal Employees & Annuitants. For the GEHA standard family plan, workers and retirees will pay $2,290 in premiums. But if feds and retirees in those same plans had to pay the full premium (absent the government contribution), the tab for the NALC plan would be $9,730, while the total premium for the GEHA plan would be $11,600.

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Believe it or not, as high as the full premium is, many people are happy to pay it. Most are ex-spouses of workers or retirees who, thanks to a qualifying court order, can participate in the FEHBP. Provided they pay the full premium (their share and the government share) plus a slight handling fee. And it gets worse …

Among the most expensive (as in high premium) plans is the SAMBA high option plan. Although an excellent plan favored by many law enforcement types, its family premium is $8,340 for federal workers and retirees. That seems like a lot, and it is a lot. But if you had to pay the full premium (your share and the government share) the total cost would be $20,810.

So while health premiums seem high because, in many cases, they are high they could be a lot higher. They could be (and in fact are) a lot higher for people on the outside, looking in, at the FEHBP program.

NEARLY USELESS FACTOID:

By Michael O’Connell

The preparation for the Coney Island Hot Dog or “Coney Dog” — a natural-casing beef hot dog topped with beef heart-based sauce, onions and one or two stripes of yellow mustard — did not originate at Coney Island, New York. Three Michigan locations have competing claims for that distinction — American and Lafayette Coney Islands in Detroit and Todoroff’s Original Coney Island in Jackson, Michigan.

Source: Wikipedia


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