OPM recently announced that employee premiums will rise an average of 2.4%—a modest increase. Federal employee advocates are advising feds to do a little homework to get the best deal.
Federal employees will see a modest bump in health insurance premiums next year—an average hike of 2.4%.
The Federal Employees Health Benefits Program (FEHBP), through the Office of Personnel Management, in recent days announced the news and offered detailed charts on the full range of the program’s offerings and respective price changes. Feds can use the charts to help inform their selections for their health insurance, as well as their dental and vision care plans, during Open Season from Nov. 8 to Dec. 13.
“The average total premiums for current non-Postal employees and annuitants enrolled in plans under the FEHB Program will increase 2.4 percent for plan year 2022, the second lowest premium increase in the last 24 years,” the OPM release said, highlighting the silver lining that the rise is among the more modest ones feds have experienced.
The head of a leading advocate and source of benefit information for federal employees, the National Association of Active and Retired Federal Employees (NARFE), commented on the price hike—and reminded feds to use available resources to make good choices.
“While higher costs for coverage may be unavoidable, federal employees and retirees should be aware that they have many options to choose from during Open Season,” Ken Thomas, NARFE’s president, advises. “Although most enrollees will see an increase of less than 5 percent if they reenroll in their current plans, it’s still important to reevaluate your options.”
“NARFE encourages all participants to thoroughly review the plans to select the one that best fits their needs. All federal employees and annuitants are encouraged to join NARFE’s upcoming Open Season webinars to help narrow their choices,” Thomas says.
It should be noted that some of the rise in premium cost will be absorbed by the federal government. But the federal employees' portion of the premium will rise more than 2.4%, up to an average of 3.8%.
This article has been updated with additional information.
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