The Government Accountability Office today released a report that found 46 percent of enrollees in the Federal Long Term Care Insurance Program who were facing steep premium hikes elected to make no changes and accept 24 percent premium increases. Those 67,511 enrollees are now paying an extra $28.54 per month on average.
The Office of Personnel Management was blasted in 2009 when it announced up to 155,000 enrollees — who were under the assumption they had signed up for an option that would protect them against those sudden hikes — would pay a lot more for their benefits. This came as a shock to many enrollees, some of whom said they might drop out of the program rather than pay the increase.
But very few people ended up doing that. Only 2,344 enrollees — less than 2 percent of those affected — let their coverage lapse.
The remaining 76,560 made some kind of change. Some scaled back to keep costs down, but others increased their coverage and ended up paying a lot more. GAO said that 29,340 kept their old coverage and opted for reduced inflation protection, which actually decreased their premiums by 12 cents on average. Another 37,648 upgraded to an expanded coverage plan and also scaled back their inflation protection. Their average monthly premiums went up 1 percent, or $2.14.
But participants who chose to keep their old inflation protection and take the expanded coverage saw the steepest hikes. Their average monthly premiums increased by 38 percent, or $40.56.
All in all, the average long term care premium increased 14 percent, or $16.30 per month.
scott lavik Says:
April 13th, 2012 at 3:39 am
i also personally think the CLASS Act will not sustain the long term care needs of its members. i think one way to reduce the burden of many people is to regulate the rates of long term care services in the country. http://www.completelongtermcare.com/resources