State government employee health insurance rates set


For Immediate Release

Finance, Administration
and Information Technology


Aug. 11, 2016

2017 insurance premiums set for government employees

OKLAHOMA CITY — The Office of Management and Enterprise Services today approved premium rates for health, dental, life, disability and vision insurance plans to be offered to state, education and many local government employees, retirees and dependents for 2017.

The rates were recommended by the Oklahoma Employees Insurance and Benefits Board and approved by OMES Director Preston L. Doerflinger. HealthChoice is the state’s self-funded insurance plan administered by OMES.

The rates presented at today’s board meeting included increases of roughly 7 to 8 percent for HealthChoice plans offered to current employees and pre-Medicare retirees. There was a 16 percent bump to premiums in HealthChoice Medicare supplement plans. These increases still keep HealthChoice below the national average for rate increases among similar, large health insurance plans since 2010, according to the board’s actuary, Aon Hewitt Consulting.

Other 2017 HealthChoice rates include an 11.34 percent decrease for HealthChoice Focus for pre-Medicare former employees and their covered dependents. Rates increased for the HealthChoice High Deductible Health Plan by 6.46 percent and for the HealthChoice Dental plan by 6.73 percent. HealthChoice Life and HealthChoice Disability Plan premiums remained the same.

“This board and the staff that works on providing HealthChoice plans, take these decisions very, very seriously,” said OEIBB Chairman Jimmy Williams. “It’s never easy to raise rates, we realize how it can impact people’s lives, but HealthChoice plans are still much lower than the industry averages.”

“We have one thing that motivates us and that is to provide our members the best most sustainable plan possible,” Williams said. “One innovation is our HealthChoice FOCUS in its second year now. Developed along with Oklahoma Health Network, it offers lower out-of-pocket costs for its members. Its premium is actually down this year.”

In addition to setting HealthChoice rates, three other health maintenance organizations will remain as options: CommunityCare, GlobalHealth and Aetna.

For primary current employee members, Aetna will offer a premium of $572.56, an 11 percent increase over last year; CommunityCare will offer a premium of $850.52, a 6.8 percent increase; and GlobalHealth will offer a premium of $529.78, a 6 percent increase.

“We worked very hard to provide the best options for coverage at the lowest possible rates,” said OMES Human Capital Management Administrator Lucinda Meltabarger. “This year has been a challenging one for state budgets and the national insurance market.”

The approved rates will take effect Jan. 1, 2017, and can be viewed at

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About the Office of Management and Enterprise Services

The Office of Management and Enterprise Services provides financial, property, purchasing, human resources and information technology services to all state agencies, and assists the Governor’s Office on budgetary policy matters. Our mission: Supporting our partners through unified business services. For more information, visit