For Immediate Release - November 20, 2012

GIC to Offer Enhanced Retiree Dental Plan Benefits for July 1

BOSTON – November 20, 2012 - The Group Insurance Commission voted last week to improve benefits effective July 1, 2013, for the approximately 20,000 state retirees who participate in the GIC Retiree Dental Program.  The annual maximum benefit will increase from $1,000 to $1,250 per covered member.  Reimbursements to providers for common procedures, such as periodontal maintenance and a two surface amalgam will increase, translating into lower out-of-pocket costs for more than half of members.  For the first time, dental implants will be covered.  Accompanying these benefit enhancements will be a modest premium increase of 3.4% and coverage frequency changes to match industry standards for certain preventive services and dental restoration services, such as crown and bridge replacements.

“The GIC Retiree Dental Program is wildly popular with state retirees and we are pleased to offer retirees, who often have fixed incomes, with better benefits,” said Dolores L. Mitchell, the GIC’s Executive Director.  “Many of the enhancements that will go into effect in July align with those enjoyed by active employees,” she continued.

As a result of a Fiscal Year 2013 provision, municipalities that offer their employees and retirees health insurance through the GIC, and that do not offer another retiree dental plan, can now opt into the GIC Retiree Dental Plan. The notification deadline for July 1, 2013, is December 1, 2012.  Each December 1 of subsequent years, participating municipalities may opt into the program for the following July 1 effective date with the term concurrent with the city or town’s GIC health insurance.  To date, six of the GIC’s 43 municipalities have opted into the program for July 1: Cities of Peabody and Pittsfield, and Towns of Holden, Millis, Saugus and Sudbury.

GIC Retirees will receive additional details about the new benefit enhancements prior to annual enrollment, which begins April 10 and runs through May 8, 2013. 

About the Group Insurance Commission

The GIC was established by the Legislature in 1955 to provide health, life, and other benefits to state employees, retirees, and their dependents. The GIC also covers housing and redevelopment authorities' personnel, participating municipalities, and retired municipal employees and teachers in certain governmental units.  There are currently over 220,000 members and 400,000 lives covered by the GIC.  A seventeen-member commission representing labor, retirees, municipal management, the public interest, the Administration, and expertise in health economics governs the GIC.

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