Open enrollment draws near

Packets will arrive in mid-October detailing 2020 health care coverage

By Michael Pramik, Ohio Public Employees Retirement System

Sept. 17, 2019 – Open enrollment time is drawing close for participants in 2020 health care coverage through OPERS.

This year’s open enrollment season will run from Oct. 15-Dec. 7. The changes will take effect on Jan. 1. Packets of information explaining coverage options will begin arriving in mid-October.

As open enrollment nears, we encourage participants to think about your health care needs and to be prepared to make choices that are best for you and your family. A few items to be aware of:

Pre-Medicare

  • If you’re not yet eligible for Medicare, you can enroll in the OPERS Retiree Health Plan, administered by Medical Mutual. It’s a network/PPO plan.
  • If you’re not yet eligible for Medicare and are re-employed, consider the Pre-Medicare Re-Employed Plan, also administered by Medical Mutual.
  • The full premium amount will increase in 2020 from $1,305.96 to $1,379.59. Pre-Medicare spouses can enroll at the full monthly premium price.
  • Out-of-pocket costs will increase in 2020, with an annual limit of $5,750. Refer to specific plan information for details.
  • A $49 monthly premium reduction, provided in previous years to participants in OPERS coverage, will not be issued in 2020 and beyond.
  • Refer to the open enrollment packet for dental and vision plan coverage.
  • If you’re making no changes, your coverage will automatically continue in 2020 and you need take no action during the open enrollment period. However, even if you are not making changes, please take the time to read over the open enrollment packet and note any coverage changes for 2020.
  • If you’re enrolling, making changes or canceling coverage, you must complete and return your open enrollment form or contact OPERS between Oct. 15 and Dec. 7. You can cancel medical coverage or adjust dental and/or vision coverage by calling us at 800-222-7377.

OPERS Medicare Connector

  • The Health Reimbursement Arrangement base monthly allowance will remain at $450 for 2020. Your monthly allowance amount, which is a percentage of the base amount, will remain unchanged.
  • Review your current medical and prescription drug plan. If your health conditions, medication or medical providers have changed in the last year, consider if your current plan will meet your needs next year.
  • Via Benefits is now administering HRA processing. Via Benefits is your source for concerns with your current insurance provider and your health care online account.
  • Remember that you must submit recurring reimbursement forms each year, including forms for Medicare part B and OPERS vision and dental premiums, as well as medical and prescription drug plan premiums not set up for automatic reimbursement.
  • OPERS will continue to offer vision and dental coverage. Refer to the open enrollment packet for more information.
  • If you’re making no changes, your coverage will automatically continue in 2020, and you need take no action during the open enrollment period.
  • If you are making changes, contact Via Benefits between Oct. 15 and Dec. 7.

Michael Pramik

Michael Pramik is communication strategist for the Ohio Public Employees Retirement System and editor of the PERSpective blog. As an experienced business journalist, he clarifies complex pension policies and helps members make smart choices to secure their retirement.

Michael Pramik

Communication Strategist

16 thoughts on “Open enrollment draws near

  • September 17, 2019 at 9:44 am
    Permalink

    Please send participants any fotms to submit for recurring medicare premiums.

    Reply
  • September 17, 2019 at 10:12 am
    Permalink

    Please confirm….
    You must submit recurring reimbursement forms each year, including forms for Medicare part B and OPERS vision and dental premiums, as well as medical and prescription drug plan premiums not set up for automatic reimbursement….

    I take this to mean….. IF I had recurring reimbursement for Dental, Vision, Medical and Drug plans in 2019 there is NO NEED to submit a recurring form for 2020, correct? Thanks.

    Reply
  • September 17, 2019 at 12:34 pm
    Permalink

    Does your monthly healthcare allowance based on service go up as your age goes up or is it fixed at your age when the plan is rolled out in 2022?

    Reply
    • September 30, 2019 at 10:08 am
      Permalink

      Wendy,

      Age-and-service allowances are based on your retirement effective date.

      –Ohio PERS

      Reply
  • September 18, 2019 at 4:28 am
    Permalink

    When does OPERS plan on making a decision on pre Medicare employees that retires before the age of 65 and will take effect in 2022?
    Thank you
    Frank

    Reply
    • September 24, 2019 at 2:48 pm
      Permalink

      Frank,

      The Board of Trustees has been discussing this issue for about a year. There is no definitive date as to when a decision will be made, but they’re scheduled to continue discussing the issue during the remaining meetings in 2019.

      –Ohio PERS

      Reply
  • September 30, 2019 at 11:19 am
    Permalink

    So I just received my open enrollment package. My medical coverage is increasing by $75+/month. With the reduced COLA I will be going BACKWARDS about $40.00/month. Not what I signed up for and paid into for 32 years.

    Reply
  • October 10, 2019 at 11:03 am
    Permalink

    Does OPERS shop around for Health Insurance coverage? Or is there a “sweetheart” deal with Medical Mutual? I had read that other insurers were anticipating no increase in premiums for 2020, and a few were even expecting a slight decrease. Medical Mutual can always be counted on for the greatest premium increase permitted, EVERY SINGLE YEAR!

    Reply
    • October 21, 2019 at 9:17 am
      Permalink

      Brian,

      OPERS periodically opens health care coverage out to bid.

      –Ohio PERS

      Reply
  • October 20, 2019 at 1:01 pm
    Permalink

    I just retired from the hospital. I worked for the prosecuting attorney for 10 years and I am now receiving a PERS check. Do I have to go through OPERS for a supplemental insurance plan now?

    Reply
    • October 21, 2019 at 9:07 am
      Permalink

      Helen,

      Please contact our Member Services staff at 800-222-7377, and they can help you.

      –Ohio PERS

      Reply
  • October 23, 2019 at 10:52 pm
    Permalink

    What happened between 2014 and 2019? Prior to retiring in 2014, I attended informational pre-retirement OPERS meetings. The OPERS spokesman at these meetings always said the OPERS funds were doing well and in good shape. I realize that Health care has gone up but it appears that the bottom is falling out of OPERS. Were investments not handled well or did the last 5 year’s have good investment returns?

    Reply
  • November 6, 2019 at 6:20 pm
    Permalink

    First off, I just attended a OPERS Open Enrollment seminar in Beavercreek. It was very informative and the Director did a nice job of detailing as best she could on the pending legislation as to what to expect as to health care (over the next few years …expected to be depleted in 2030), COLAs, etc. Her answers appeared frank and honest and I left feeling more secure. I still do not know the plan for a 20 year employee who wants to retire before 65 when health care and “allowances” are no longer available? I would encourage folks to attend in if these sessions if still open.

    Reply
    • November 13, 2019 at 11:24 am
      Permalink

      David,

      Under the proposed changes for pre-Medicare retirees, we’re replacing group coverage with an allowance that retirees can use on the open health care market. You will receive an allowance to purchase health insurance or to use for other health care expenses. The allowance amount hasn’t been determined yet, but it will be based on your age and years of service at retirement. At this point, the Board likely won’t make any decisions regarding health care changes until early next year with the changes going into effect in 2022.

      JUlie, OPERS

      Reply

Leave a Reply to Helen M Andreas Cancel reply

dialog-information.png
We encourage your comments on the Ohio Public Employees Retirement System’s PERSpective blog. We can’t respond to every comment. Please be aware that we review all comments before they’re posted, and we reserve the right to edit, not publish or remove any comment that in our sole discretion does not further the purpose of the blog. For further details, please see our Comments Policy.
 

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *