Reg Jones, a charter member of the senior executive service, has been in the federal government for decades and is well-versed in retirement benefits. From 1979 to 1995, he served as an assistant director of the U.S. Office of Personnel Management handling recruiting and examining, white and blue collar pay, retirement, insurance and other issues.
One of the many attractive features of the Federal Employees Health Benefits program is that you can switch from one health benefits plan to another during the annual Open Enrollment season. If you are considering switching from your current plan BCBS Standard (106) self plus one to GEHA High (313), there are some things you may want to consider before making a decision.
Firstly, it’s important to note that you can only switch between FEHB plans once per year during open enrollment season, which typically takes place in November or December. Additionally, if you decide to switch to GEHA High (313), you may not be able to switch back to BCBS Standard (106) until the next open enrollment period if you don’t like it.
It’s also worth noting that while Medicare part A is widely used by retirees, many do not enroll in Part B because they have adequate coverage through their FEHB plan. According to NARFE (the National Active and Retiree Employees Association), the vast majority of retirees don’t enroll in Part B because they have adequate coverage without it. However, if you do decide to enroll in Medicare part B, it will cost an additional premium each month and may offer additional benefits such as prescription drug coverage.
Lastly, it would be interesting to know what percentage of retirees use FEHB and Medicare part A only. As a journalist I can reach out to experts or organizations such as NARFE for more information on this topic.