State Employee Health Plan Premiums Rise

November 16, 2000 ( - Average monthly premiums for state employee HMO's rose 9.3% last year, compared with just 4.7% for point of service (POS) plans, according to a new survey.

The Segal Company’s Survey of State Employee Health Benefit Plans found that just 26 states offered preferred provider organizations (PPOs), down from 31 states three years ago.

HMO/POS enrollment increased, despite an overall decrease in the number of plans offered to participants nationally. Over 1.7 million employees were enrolled in the plans in 1999.

For the 43 reporting states with indemnity coverage, the average monthly cost for employee coverage increased 6.6%, while the number of states reporting that their indemnity plans were self-insured in 1999 (32) has remained relatively static over the past decade.

As a group, the states that participated in the survey in 1999 budgeted more than $10.6 billion for their health plans, ranging from Montana’s $31.6 million to Georgia’s $893.3 million.

The survey includes baseline data for such items as how managed-care quality is measured; the availability of Medicare-risk-contract HMOs; state contributions to Medicare Part B premiums for retirees; and, the availability of domestic partner coverage.