Health Insurance

Articles about Health Insurance that may be useful to Massachusetts retirees

GIC Hits Retirees Again

SEPTEMBER 2003
- Prescription Changes Outrage Retirees - Adding insult to injury and further outraging retirees, the state's
Group Insurance Commission has made significant changes to the state's
prescription drug plan. These changes will cost many retirees hundreds,
if not thousands, of dollars a year in new out-of-pocket expenses.

GIC'S Insurance Propaganda Continues

SEPTEMBER 2003
- Part B Ripoff Is Shameful - While members insured under the Group Insurance Commission's Optional
Medicare Extension plan become increasingly enraged about the GIC's
sellout, the GIC's propaganda machine continues its insidious campaign,
intent on convincing retirees that previous payments on behalf of
Medicare Part B were bestowed gratuitously and should not be expected
during difficult fiscal times.

Federal Rules On Health Insurance Protect Privacy Of Medical Information

JULY 2003
- One of the major services that the Association offers to its members
is assistance with problems relating to their insurance claims. "We
can't guarantee success but members know that we'll do whatever we can
to resolve their claims," states Insurance Coordinator Cheryl Stillman.

Insurance Pool Serves West/Central Mass.

JULY 2003
- Sixty-One Towns/Districts In Hampshire Insurance Group - Health insurance pools, in which municipalities and other political
subdivisions join together to purchase and administer health insurance
plans for retirees and employees, are not a new phenomenon. In fact,
there are several longstanding pools in the state, for example, the
Plymouth County Health Insurance and the Berkshire County Insurance
Group (See July 1998 & July 2000 Voice respectively).

Health Fairs Well-Attended As Premium Increase Pressure Mounts

JULY 2003
- April and May were Group Insurance Commission Health Fair months.
During that time, the GIC held 14 health fairs at various locations
throughout the Commonwealth, attracting large crowds.

GIC Health Insurance Has Wide Participation

JULY 2003
- Umbrella Covers Many Local Retirees - Although many think of the Commonwealth's Group Insurance Commission
(GIC) as an agency that insures only state retirees, the GIC is also
the insurer for large numbers of local government retirees.

Legislature Dismisses Romney Plan

JULY 2003
- Retiree Insurance Contributions Upheld - Retirees, insured under the state's Group Insurance Commission,
narrowly avoided a dramatic increase in their monthly health insurance
contributions. Legislative leaders have grandfathered retirees under
their existing contribution rates of 90/10 or 85/15, depending upon the
date of retirement.

Insurance Officials Fail Retirees

JULY 2003
- Offer No Defense of Medicare Refund Despite Budget Surplus - As Association lobbyists battled on Beacon Hill to fully restore and
guarantee the reimbursement of the state's share of the Medicare Part B
payment, officials with the state's Group Insurance Commission (GIC)
offered no support.

Modest Insurance Rates Increase, But Romney Plan Lurks In Background

MAY 2003
- As the Association and our members fight back Governor Romney’s
proposed increase in insurance contribution rates, state insurance
officials have announced an overall modest increase in insurance costs
for the next fiscal year (’04).

Everett Retirees Win Insurance Freeze

MARCH 2003
- Legislation Sponsored By Mayor - City of Everett retirees are the happy beneficiaries of a law that
will lock them into their current health insurance premium contribution
percentage.