CalPERS approved a 3.2 percent increase in health insurance premiums Wednesday, less than half the rate increase recorded a year ago.
With more than 1.4 million members, CalPERS’ health care program is often viewed as an indicator of rate trends nationally.
A year ago, the California Public Employees’ Retirement System approved a nearly 7.7 percent increase in premiums. Nearly half of the increase was attributed to higher prescription drug costs.
This time, spokesman Bill Madison said the pension fund’s three-year-old “risk adjustment process” helped bring about more moderate increases. The process has enabled CalPERS to bring more scrutiny to each carrier’s health claims data, Madison said.
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“One of the things we’ve required over the years is more transparency,” Madison said.
Members of CalPERS’ HMO plans will see an average increase of 4.1 percent. Rates for PPO members will climb 3.8 percent.