That change in Federal Employees Health Benefits Program premiums is significantly larger than the 3.8 percent average increase for 2022, although closer to the 5-7 percent range of most other recent years.
The cost increase is a reflection of rising prices for some drugs and higher uses of professional services and outpatient treatments, said the Office of Personnel Management. “This is consistent with the larger market and reflects the impact of the COVID pandemic,” OPM said.
The program is open to nearly all federal employees and retirees who were covered continuously for five years before leaving the job; it has more than 4 million enrollees and about an equal number of covered spouses and children under 26, making it the nation’s largest employer-sponsored health insurance program.
“These premium increases may be similar to those expected by other large employers in the private sector, but they will still cause sticker shock for federal employees,” said National Treasury Employees Union President Tony Reardon.