State Employees May be Saying Goodbye to Popular Health Insurance
This coming Friday hundreds of thousands of state employees and retirees could be effected forever if officials vote to change the current State Health Plan. The proposed changes would include removal of coverage for spouses, elimination of the 80/20 plan (which covers 40% of employees), and increases in overall costs. If this new plan passes, North Carolina's State Health Plan will be the worst in the US and will be negatively impact working families across our state.
Who is behind these cuts? No surprise - Governor McCrory and politicians.
Executives who run the health plan, which covers state workers, teachers and retirees, have also recommended that the board consider eliminating coverage for spouses, likely sending most of them to shop for coverage on Affordable Care Act exchanges.
Changes under consideration would also add premiums and raise the deductibles paid by those who enroll in the remaining plans. One of those is a "consumer-directed" plan with high deductibles paired with a health savings account. For many state workers, particularly those who earn lower salaries, that plan isn't affordable, said Ardis Watkins, the lead lobbyist for SEANC. "If you can't afford to shell out a lot of upfront cost, it's like not having insurance at all," Watkins said.
"Ultimately, I think this was the legislature's fault," Hall said, noting it was lawmakers that pushed the plan to find cost savings. "I think it's just another way to cost shift onto the working class. Not only are we doing that, but we found a sneaky way to make them (the health plan) the hatchet men."