FEHB after 65


Q. I’m currently (last 10 years) enrolled in the Blue Cross Standard family plan #105, for my wife and myself. Once I turn 65 and enroll in Medicare, would I continue with the same plan or enroll in a lesser plan such as the Blue Cross Basic family plan #112 to save money? One would think that with Medicare kicking in at age 65, which subsidizes medical cost, the supplemental Blue Cross plan would cost less. Does that sound right?

A. The FEHB program bases its premiums on the broadest possible risk pool, which includes those who don’t submit a single claim in a given year to those whose bills would reach the ceiling. This makes the cost of coverage more affordable for everyone. Fragmenting the risk pool would benefit some and break the bank for others. To lower your costs, you may want to select a lower-cost plan. Just be sure that the combination of your plan and Medicare produce the financial outcome that’s best for you.


About Author

Reg Jones was head of retirement and insurance policy at the Office of Personnel Management. Email your retirement-related questions to fedexperts@federaltimes.com.

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