The State Worker

CalPERS scrubs 18,000 people from health insurance rolls

CalPERS has shed 18,000 people from its employer-provided medical insurance rolls, fund officials said Monday, after a rigorous two-year review that looked for ineligible dependents who received coverage even though they didn’t qualify.

The system figures state and local governments and school districts with health insurance plans administered by CalPERS have saved a combined $122 million annually in lower premiums and avoided medical costs since the inception of the review in 2013, including savings from 6,700 ineligible people voluntarily removed by members.

There’s no estimate for what employers will save from pruning the rolls, system spokesman Bill Madison III said.

CalPERS launched the massive project to verify that everyone insured as members’ dependents were eligible to receive coverage. At the time, officials estimated they would find about 29,000 ex-spouses, live-in partners and others receiving coverage who shouldn’t have been.

Last year the retirement system spent more than $7.7 billion on health care benefits for 1.4 million current employees, retirees and their dependents.

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