Dear Mass Retirees Member:
Yesterday, the state’s Group Insurance Commission (GIC) announced and approved a major change in the insurance options being offered to retirees and active employees who are insured under the state GIC. These changes are controversial, sudden and we do not support the process used by the GIC to bring them about.
Members insured by local cities and towns that are not part of the state GIC are NOT impacted by these changes.
Beginning July 1, 2017, the GIC will no longer offer Fallon and Harvard Pilgrim as insurance options for retirees OR active employees. In addition, Tufts will only be a Medicare plan option and not open to active employees or non-Medicare retirees.
Being a GIC enrollee myself, I am not happy about what transpired at the GIC meeting and know that these changes will upset many members. Mass Retirees is here to answer your questions and assist those required to switch to a new insurance plan.
Thankfully, UniCare will continue to be an option for both Medicare eligible retirees and non-Medicare retirees and active employees. I know this is a relief for the more than 70,000 retirees insured under the UniCare Optional Medicare Extension (OME) Plan, as well as the Basic Indemnity Plan.
In addition to UniCare, Tufts will continue as a Medicare provider. UniCare, Health New England and Neighborhood Health Plan will be the GIC’s three non-Medicare providers.
If you are negatively impacted by the GIC’s decision, you have the opportunity to have your voice heard during the GIC’s Public Hearing process, which began today in Worcester. Another 8 public hearings will be held across Massachusetts through Monday, January 29th. Click here for more information on attending a public hearing.
Rest assured, Mass Retirees is closely monitoring activities at the GIC and will keep all members informed as further details regarding plan design and cost are known over the coming weeks. The GIC will announce these details in early February.
Retired State, County and Municipal Employees Association
11 Beacon Street Suite 309
Boston, Massachusetts 02108