Retiree health benefits are going the way of the dodo bird, and healthcare premiums for everyone keep rising. But 324,000 lucky California state workers, retirees and their families are getting a break from the bad news in whats being called a premium holiday.
The California Public Employees Retirement System, the nations largest pension fund, is using $265 million in excess reserves from its self-funded PPO plans to offset premiums and contributions paid by members and employers for two months.
The average member will save $134 during the eight-week premium holiday, which is expected to take place sometime this summer. It also gives a $131 million break to the state of California and saves contracting employers $91 million.
Our PPO members have been doing their part by making healthier lifestyle choices, practicing preventative care and using generic drugs where available, Priya Mathur, chairwoman of CalPERS Health Benefits Committee, said in a written statement.
If only we all could be rewarded for good behavior.