Some veterans' health, vision insurance costs to increase in 2020

Abbie Bennett
October 08, 2019 - 10:38 am

Photo by Seaman Jairus Bailey

Some military retirees and families will have to pay more for dental and vision insurance next year.

Retirees and families who have coverage through the Federal Employees Dental and Vision Insurance Program (FEDVIP) are expected to see an average increase of 5.6 percent for dental plans and about 1.5 percent for vision plans, the Office of Personnel Management announced.

The increases follow a "historically low increase" of about 1.3 percent last year, but are comparable to average increases from the past five years, OPM said. 

Last year's increase was low because the Affordable Care Act Health Insurance Providers Fee was waived, OPM said. That fee is a tax on some health insurers and this year, the fee was not waived. 

The recent changes haven't affected those who are insured through Tricare since they became eligible for FEDVIP dental and vision coverage last year when more than 1.4 million enrolled. 

The rate increase announcement comes about a month ahead of open enrollment season for federal benefits, which runs from Nov. 11 to Dec. 9.

“Today’s announcement is the culmination of a yearlong effort,” OPM Director Dale Cabaniss said in a statement. “Our employees have worked tirelessly on behalf of all Feds and retirees to secure them world-class healthcare and give them the knowledge to make informed decisions for their families.”

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Reach Abbie Bennett: or @AbbieRBennett.