GIC Retiree Vision Plan Now In Its Sixth Year

NOV 2006 - Insurers Bid On
State’s Retiree Dental Plan
- Over five years ago, the state’s Group Insurance Commission
(GIC) embarked upon a vision program for its retirees and their families. “Now
in its sixth year, the GIC’s Retiree Vision Plan offers something a bit different
from one’s usual insurance coverage with the state,” explains Association
Insurance Coordinator Cheryl Stillman.

“It’s a discount program, which means you pay less than the
retail price. For sometime, I’ve been reminding our members, upset over the
cost of their eyeglasses, to look into the vision plan and call its toll-free
number (1-800-224-1157) or visit the web site (”

Davis Vision, a leading managed vision and eye care company,
administers the Retiree Vision Plan. Davis
also provides vision care benefits to employees insured under the GIC.

This is how it works. A retiree calls Davis Vision at the
toll free number, listed above, and speaks with a member service representative
who then talks them through the selection and purchase process.

When a selection has been made, the retiree pre-pays Davis
either by check, money order or credit card. Once the payment has been
processed, the retiree can then go to a participating Davis Vision provider, of
which there are approximately 900 in the Commonwealth (for example, all
Cambridge Eye Doctors offices) for their glasses.

“Again, for those, wanting to save some money, yet not
sacrifice quality – and who doesn’t these days, this could be the answer for
you,” comments Stillman. “And, I can tell you that since the Plan has been
offered, I’ve not received one complaint. So, if you’re insured by the GIC, why
not at least look into it when you’re getting ready to buy your next set of

Dental Plan: Altus
Contract Expires This July

Altus Dental is currently serving as the administrator of
the GIC’s retiree dental plan (telephone: 1-800-722-1148 or Website: Altus’contract with the GIC expires June 30, 2007.

In anticipation of that, the GIC has solicited bids for the
plan’s administrator beginning next July, and at press time, bids are being
accepted. Boston Benefit Partners is the agency’s consultant in the selection

Our readers may remember that Boston Benefit Partners was
the GIC’s consultant in creating the retiree dental plan. According to
Stillman, “Partner’s John Brouder worked closely with us then, and has
continued to do so, in order to make a success of the dental plan.” 

Since its inception, the GIC’s retiree dental plan has
experienced steady growth. At present, there are about 9,324 retirees enrolled
in the plan – an amazing 160% increase over the number of retirees (3,590) who
first enrolled in the plan some four years ago.”

Note: If you
include spouses and dependents, there are approximately 12,818 insured in the

“When the plan was being developed some five years ago, it
was extremely difficult to stimulate strong interest in it among most dental
insurers,” recalls Brouder. “With the plan’s phenomenal growth, there may be
renewed interest, which hopefully will result in even better premiums and
benefits for retirees and their families.”