“State Board Adopts 2015 Health Insurance Rates”
The Oklahoma Employees Insurance and Benefits Board (OEIBB) met Friday, August 1, in Oklahoma City to adopt premium rates for HealthChoice insurance programs for active and retired state and education employees for the calendar year beginning January 1, 2015.
The news is very good for retired educators participating in the HealthChoice Medicare Supplement with Part D pharmacy program, but not so good for those retired but not yet qualified for Medicare.
For retired educators in the Medicare Supplement with Part D program, the 2015 monthly premium rate will be $16.10 less than 2014, for a rate reduction of 4.98%. The new monthly rate of $307.28 is the result of recent favorable claims experience, combined with a monthly subsidy of $29.34 from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. The $307.28 monthly rate does not include the Teachers’ Retirement System subsidy ranging from $102 to $105 per month for qualifying retirees, which will further reduce out-of-pocket expense for insurance premiums.
Almost 32,000 retired state and education employees and dependents participate in the Medicare Supplement with Part D program.
For retired educators not yet qualified for Medicare, the adopted 2015 premium for the high option plan is $499.42, up $14.55 from 2014 – a hike of 3.00%. The new rate reflects an OEIBB subsidy of $24.64 per member per month. Stated differently, the subsidy will make the monthly premium $24.64 less than it would be without the subsidy.
Less than 9,000 retired state and education employees and dependents participate in the pre-Medicare program, representing less than 10% of the approximately 109,000 individuals covered by the plan.
OREA representatives were on hand for the adoption of 2015 premiums, having already provided input on behalf of retired educators early in the rate-setting process.
Members with questions about state-sponsored health, life, dental, and disability programs are invited to contact the OREA office.
Fellow Retired Educators,
As your new OREA President, let me introduce myself and update you about a few items concerning our association.
The first thing I would like to do is express appreciation to my predecessor, Elaine Dodd, who recently completed a successful two-year term as President. She was a great President, but now will continue to serve on the Board of Directors as Past President. We will count on her knowledge and skills to continue to benefit OREA in so many ways, but particularly in the advocacy arena.
If you don’t know me, I have been an OREA member since retiring from the Stroud Public Schools several years ago. I served as Director of the North Central District on the OREA Board of Directors from July, 2011 until June 30 of this year.
One of my primary goals as President will be to travel the state to meet as many members as possible. Already, I have a growing schedule of speaking events at dozens of local units. Can I add yours to the list?
I plan to send short emails periodically throughout the year to thousands of OREA members, to share news of the association, and encourage your involvement in everything that’s going on within the organization. I hope to talk about topics of interest to you, including legislative issues and events, member benefits, and many other outstanding OREA programs. I’ll try to focus on the relevant, and be succinct about it. I know your time is valuable, and I don’t want to waste it.
My messages will come to you under the heading “Did You Know?” I hope you’ll look for them. Please don’t be reluctant to let me know how I’m doing. Help me interact with you on matters you consider important.
Until you hear from me again, thank you for being a member of the Oklahoma Retired Educators Association.
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Click here to read the 2014 SummerNews Bulletin
“Mike Turpen Brand of Love and Humor
Makes OREA Convention All Good!”
One of the best-attended and liveliest OREA state conventions in recent years was held Wednesday and Thursday, May 7-8, at the Reed Conference Center in Midwest City. Judging by the decibel level and numerous member testimonials, it was one of the best in recent memory.
Much of the noise came from the belly laughter generated by Mike Turpen, the convention’s keynote speaker, who kept the audience entertained and inspired with a 30-minute speech touching on a variety of life topics. Just days before Mother’s Day, Turpen painted a poignant picture of the loving impact his own mother had on his life. In rapid-fire fashion thereafter, he threw out one-liners, each used to illustrate lessons applicable to all stages of our lives.
Mike Turpen is a former Oklahoma Attorney General, and for more than 20 years has been a cast member of the popular Flashpoint program which airs Sunday mornings on Oklahoma City’s KFOR Channel 4.
Turpen challenged conventioneers to think big, behave courageously, value relationships, and live every second, minute and day to the fullest. The foundation for his presentation was his newly published book, Turpen Time: The Wit and Wisdom of Mike Turpen, a collection of 50 vignettes about people, events and lessons from his life. Thanks to the generosity of Harland Stonecipher, an early Turpen mentor, every member of the convention audience received a complimentary copy of Turpen Time.
Adding icing to the cake, the speaker devoted over an hour during the noon luncheon visiting with and personally autographing books for dozens of OREA members.
Praise for the Turpen speech was heard coming from several hardened conventioneers who came convinced they would be offended by what they expected to be just another worn out offering from a career politician. My, how wrong they were!
Click here to view pictures from the 2014 OREA Convention...
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“Program Ideas for Local Unit Meetings and Activities”
Need a new, fresh program idea for your local county meeting? Thanks to the OREA Communications Committee and the Tulsa Metro Retired Educators Association for their suggestions.
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