The total PEEHIP deficit for 2015-2016 was $140 million, and our collaborative efforts kept $111 million of that from coming out of active and retirees pockets!Please Note: The original chart that has been reported around the state by various news outlets is inaccurate. Without the calls and emails of AERA and AEA members to the PEEHIP Board, education employees would have absorbed $111 million in increases. Thanks to calls and emails to the PEEHIP Board of Control Members YOUR MONTHLY PREMIUM will not increase. Are there some PEEHIP adjustments? Yes. Will the adjustments affect everyone? Yes! There were a few changes to the PEEHIP program beginning October 1, 2015.
1. Tobacco Premium: If you or your covered spouse use tobacco products, your copay will be $50/month for each smoker. The surcharge is currently $28 per month.
2. Slight increase for copay to see a specialist of $35/visit beginning October 1, 2015. This is a $5 increase. All other doctor visits will remain at $30. Does not impact Family/General Practice, Internal Medicine, Gynecology, Obstetrics, Pediatrician, Certified Nurse Practitioner, Physician Assistant, Clinic & Midwives.
3. The largest increase is a new spousal surcharge. This increase will be phased in over the next three years. If you are not on Medicare, your increase will be $25 a year for the next three years beginning on October 1, 2015. If you are on Medicare, your spousal surcharge will total $25 over three years. Beginning October 1, 2015, the increase will be $10; followed by additional $10 October 1, 2016; and an additional $5 on October 1, 2017. This surcharge was created due to the fact that research of PEEHIP claims show that spouses actually cost PEEHIP more than the active or retired education employee.
Please be sure to thank the following PEEHIP Board members who voted against a premium increase: Dr. Susan Brown; Ricky Whaley; Charlene McCoy; Joe Ward; Susan Lockridge; and Russell Twilley. (Also note the above listed are all elected by PEEHIP participants)
Those who voted for a premium increase were: Sarah Swindle; State Superintendant Dr. Tommy Bice; Finance Director Bill Newton; Luke Hallmark; Teresa Swindall and Dickie Brown. Also State Treasurer Young Boozer abstained.
Remember your efforts saved PEEHIP participants $111 Million. Please share with others especially non-members. Everyone needs to know this information.
Janice J. Charlesworth
Alabama Education Retirees Association
800-537-6867 or 334-262-4177