PEIA changes proposed; public hearings planned statewide

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The Public Employee Insurance Agency is asking covered members to comment on proposed cuts that could change deductibles, copays and some coverage options next year. Several public hearings will be held around the state in November, and the PEIA Finance Board is expected to vote on the 2015-2016 benefits package in December.

Public hearings are scheduled beginning Nov. 10, 2014, and running through Nov. 20 in Beckley, Huntington, Martinsburg, Morgantown, Wheeling and Charleston. See below for a detailed list of the public hearings.        

The Finance Board must come up with $30 million in cuts for active employees, $4.5 million for pre-65 retirees and $4 million for Medicare retirees during the next plan year. For the first time, the board is asking for members’ input. If you attend a public hearing you may vote on the specific benefit reductions you’d prefer. There will also be online voting options (via Survey Monkey) for those unable to attend in person. The Finance Board is not bound to select the most popular choices. However it was made clear it would certainly consider the most popular choices in making its determinations.

Some of the suggestions include:

  •          Increase the A and D plans’ family out-of-pocket maximum from 1½ times the employee-only amount to 2 times the employee-only amount. This is projected to save $6.75 million.
  •          Increase deductibles by $25 and $50 or $50 and $100 (employee only/family)
  •          Increase copays – primary care from $15 to $20 and specialist from $25 to $40
  •          Add a $100 copay to inpatient hospital care and genetic testing (in addition to deductible and 20 percent coinsurance)
  •          Increase surgery copay from $50 to $100
  •          Increase ER copay from $50 to $100 (currently $50 if emergency; $100 if not)
  •          Increase Urgent Care copay from $50 to $100
  •          End coverage of massage therapy
  •          End coverage of impacted  wisdom teeth
  •          Add Reference Based Pricing for 34 targeted procedures:  Healthcare Bluebook provides cost comparison, pricing and quality data for health-care procedures and providers.  Allows members to choose wisely and become aware of in-network providers within their region. Member exceptions for urgent and emergency care, oncology, and more will apply.
  •          Change copays on generic prescriptions (currently $5 for 30-day supply/ $10 for 90-day)
    •    Increase to $10 and $20, or
    •    Charge 20 percent coinsurance for generic drugs with a $5 minimum and $25 maximum – 30-day supply and $10 minimum/$50 maximum on a 90-day supply
  •          Change brand drug copays (currently $15 for 30-day supply/$30 for 90-day)
    •    Increase cost to $25 and $50, or
    •    Charge 20 percent or 30 percent coinsurance, both with a $15 minimum and $50 maximum – 30-day supply and $30 minimum/ $100 maximum on a 90-day supply


Medicare Proposed Options

  •          Increase deductible from $25 to $100 or $125
  •          Increase out-of-pocket maximum from $750 to $1,000 or $1,200
  •          Increase copayment for office visits from $10/20 to $20/$40
  •          Increase inpatient hospital copay from $100 to $150 or $200
  •          Increase outpatient surgery from $50 to $100
  •          Add premium increase


After July 1, 2015, new surviving dependents can continue coverage at current years of service based on policyholders’ status at time of death. Surviving spouse coverage terminates at (re)marriage and for children at age 26.

Healthy Tomorrows Program

  •          Three year span
  •          Status reported at Open Enrollment for active employees
  •          Applies to policyholder ONLY
  •          Penalty for failure to meet requirements results in an additional $500 annual deductible
  •          New employees will have existing deductible structure but must comply during next open enrollment
  •          Year One (Plan Year 2016)
    •    Find a primary care physician
  •          Year Two (Plan Year 2017)
    •    Name primary care physician
    •    Report:
      •   Blood Pressure
      •   Glucose
      •   Cholesterol
      •   Waist circumference
  •          Year Three (Plan Year 2018)
    •    Name primary care physician
    •    Reported values meet following:
      •   Blood pressure ≤ 140/90
      •   Glucose ≤ 125
      •   Cholesterol ≤ 245
      •   Waist circumference – no value required
    •    A physician’s statement that one or more of these values cannot be met will waive the requirement for that specific measure.

Under the Affordable Care Act, members are entitled to one primary care visit covered at 100 percent with no copays or deductibles.  It is recommended that your medical home physician provide the exam.  The visit includes a physical and history consisting of screening and counseling for alcohol and substance abuse, blood pressure, depression, diabetes, domestic violence, nutrition, obesity, physical activity, STD prevention, review of medication and blood work that includes a lipid panel and general health panel.


Public hearings scheduled:

The proposed changes will be available at by the end of October and at the public hearings below. Registration for the 6 p.m. hearings will begin at 5 p.m. You must register to speak. If you can’t attend a hearing, you may provide input by completing an online survey, which will be available at by the end of October.

Monday, Nov. 10, 2014 - Beckley

Tamarack - Ballroom A

One Tamarack Park, Beckley, WV


Thursday, Nov. 13, 2014 - Huntington

Marshall Medical School - Harless Auditorium

1600 Medical Center Drive, Huntington, WV


Monday, Nov. 17, 2014 - Martinsburg

Holiday Inn - Foxcroft Ballroom

301 Foxcroft Avenue, Martinsburg, WV


Tuesday, Nov. 18, 2014 - Morgantown

Ramada Inn - Grand Ballroom

20 Scott Avenue, Morgantown, WV


Wednesday, Nov. 19, 2014 - Wheeling

WV Northern Community College - Auditorium

1704 Market Street, Wheeling, WV


Thursday, Nov. 20, 2014 - Charleston

Charleston Civic Center - Little Theater

200 Civic Center Drive, Charleston, WV


Customer Service -- PEIA will provide customer service in each location from 5-6 p.m. If you have questions about medical, prescription or life insurance benefits, come early and get answers. If you can’t attend a hearing in person, please submit comments in writing by e-mail to:<>.