Understanding Medical Plan Rate Changes
As we approach Open Enrollment for the year 2024, it's important for UC Davis employees to stay informed about rate changes to our health plans.
While our generous medical plan benefits remain little changed for 2024, we are facing significant increases in medical plan costs, due to factors beyond our control.
The UC Blue & Gold HMO rates on the UCnet website, and published in the UC Open Enrollment brochure mailed to your residence are not the correct rates for UC Davis and ANR employees.
See correct, subsidized rates
Medical plan costs are increasing nationwide
Update Nov. 15 - read new UC FAQs about rising medical plan premiums
Healthcare costs are rising and affecting every industry, but UC Davis has taken steps to keep rates more affordable by covering a larger share of the premiums through increased subsidies and additional employer contributions. We continue to make sure health insurance costs stay lower for employees with lower salaries. However, it's now more important than ever to understand your options in order to make your best choices during Open Enrollment.
Rates for employees selecting the lowest-cost UC Blue & Gold plan (self coverage for those earning $68,000 or less per year) will increase less than $8 per month. On the other hand, for UC Health Savings Plan members covering family members, premiums are almost three times higher than last year.
For those who choose not to make changes during Open Enrollment, your current health coverage will continue in 2024, but costs for most employees will increase.
For UC Davis’ represented employees, costs are different for different bargaining units. In each case, though, UC Davis is providing lower-than-market costs for employees, honoring the commitments made in union contracts for employee contributions to health benefits.
Check out ALEX (UC's virtual benefits counselor), which shows employee-specific premium rates based on plan, coverage level and collective bargaining unit as applicable and provides plan comparisons side-by-side.
- Starting October 26
You can log in to UCPath to see the medical plan premiums that apply to you and make any changes.
Why Are Rates Increasing?
The impact of rising medical plan premiums is being felt not only at UC Davis but also by employers of all types across the nation, due to a number of factors including increased utilization of health care services, higher prescription drug costs, and more high-cost claims.
How is UC Working to Keep Rates Affordable?
Benefits are one of the many great reasons to work at UC Davis. To help protect UC employees and their families from the rising cost of health care, we’re directly reducing member premiums:
- UC approved a significant budget increase for 2024
An additional $84 million for employees and $9 million for Medicare-eligible retirees. This follows an increase in 2023 of $29.5 million for employees and $5.5 million for retirees. These funds are used to reduce the monthly health plan costs for UC beneficiaries.
- UC Davis further buys down medical plan costs for the UC Blue & Gold plan
The UC Blue & Gold plan is one of the lowest cost health plan options available, maintaining affordability for employees and ensuring access to UC Davis Health’s excellent care.
We understand that some employees may have questions regarding the UC Health Savings Plan's higher increases. This plan has experienced greater utilization than other plans and a significant number of very high-cost claims. To ensure the healthcare costs of HSP members are adequately covered, adjustments to the plan premium were necessary.
As we navigate these changes, UC Davis remains committed to offering valuable benefits to our employees. We encourage you to explore your options during Open Enrollment to ensure you have the right coverage for your needs in 2024. Your well-being and financial security remain our top priorities.
When will I start paying the new benefit premium rates?
Your coverage under these changes begins on January 1, 2024. You will see the first premium deductions on your paycheck:
- Monthly Paid Employees: Jan. 2, 2024
- Bi-weekly Paid Employees: Dec. 6, 2023
Rates for 2024 are based on the employee's full-time salary rate as of Jan. 1, 2023.