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CalPERS to increase HMO and PPO premiums by 3.27% in 2015

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Premiums for health maintenance organizations and preferred provider organizations offered by the California Public Employees' Retirement System that have the most enrollees will increase an average of 3.27% in 2015.

Under a package that has been given final approval, the premium hike, recommended earlier by CalPERS' Pension and Health Benefits Committee was approved Wednesday by its board of administration.

That 3.27% rate increase compares with this year's average increase of about 3%.

“We have made a concerted effort to strengthen coordination of care between providers, integrate delivery systems, and provide intensive management for our chronically ill members to improve member quality of care and reduce costs,” Priya Mathur, the committee's chair, said in a statement.

The relatively low rate increase is encouraging amid continued worries that the health care reform law will significantly boost demand for health care services due to more people being covered in health insurance plans, leading to providers to hike charges.

CalPERS, with 1.4 million program members, says it is the second-largest purchaser of health care services in the United States after the federal government.

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