Sunday, December 13, 2009

Weekend update / Miscellany

The annual Federal Benefits Open Season ends tomorrow.

The Senate and the House now have approved the omnibus spending measure which funds the FEHBP for the current federal fiscal year, according to the Washington Post. This bill also allows federal employees a 1.5% pay raise and a 0.5% locality pay increase.

Business Insurance reports that the chief actuary for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services has concluded that "U.S. health care spending would rise by about $234 billion over the next decade under the Senate Democrats' overhaul bill, and some of the proposed savings might never be achieved." This frankly does not surprise me.

The details on the compromise that would replace the public plan option in the Senate bill with a Medicare expansion and a parallel program to FEHBP supervised by OPM have not been released. Nevertheless Sen. Joe Lieberman (I Conn.) has come out against the Medicare expansion according to the Politico. Investors Business Daily offers expert views on the parallel FEHB program while NARFE has come out against OPM supervision of that program.

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