Health Care Program News

Retirement Board Adopts Health Care Premium Subsidy Plan for 2019 and Beyond That Is Designed to Extend the Life of the Health Care Fund

At its October meeting, the Retirement Board adopted a new plan for providing health care premium subsidy assistance to benefit recipients who are enrolled in the STRS Ohio Health Care Program. The new subsidy strategy will go into effect in 2019 and will not affect the 2018 health care plan or premiums.

Since STRS Ohio health care plan enrollees are eligible for Medicare for most of their retirement years, the board-approved subsidy plan will offer greater protection against health care inflation for Medicare enrollees than for non-Medicare enrollees. Under the new subsidy plan, benefit recipients who are enrolled in an STRS Ohio health care plan under Medicare will receive a subsidy that will grow with health care inflation up to a cap of 6%. Non-Medicare enrollees will receive the same subsidy dollar amounts that are offered in 2018; however, this dollar amount will not grow with inflation in the future.

The newly adopted plan is projected to extend the solvency of the Health Care Fund to the year 2047. The fund previously was estimated to remain solvent through 2034. Additional details on subsidies, plan design and 2019 plan premiums will be shared in the spring/summer 2018 newsletters.

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Approved 2018 Health Care Program Changes and Premiums Announced

STRS Ohio offers a health care program to eligible benefit recipients. Access to health care coverage is optional and is not guaranteed under Ohio law; however, STRS Ohio understands that access to health care coverage is important to many members. For the 2018 plan year, the only plan design change is a $50 increase in the out-of-pocket limit for prescriptions, to $5,000 from $4,950.

Health care plan premiums available on STRS Ohio’s website

For many STRS Ohio members, anticipated health care costs are an important component in determining their financial needs in retirement. Members can review a complete list of 2018 premiums for all STRS Ohio health care plans here. You may also request a copy by calling the Member Services Center toll-free at 888‑227‑7877.

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