Government of the Federated States of Micronesia

Amendment would raise health insurance premiums

POHNPEI, Palikir (FSM Information Service): August 2000 - The FSM Secretary of Finance and Administration is pushing for an emergency amendment that would add 10 percent to premiums and set limits to re-enrollment to the government health insurance plan.

In a letter to President Leo A. Falcam, Secretary John Ehsa argues that such an emergency amendment to the FSM National Government Employees' Health Insurance Plan Regulations would accomplish two purposes.

The first purpose would be to "inject much-needed funding into the Plan," wrote Ehsa, who went on to write that the Plan incurred, in Fiscal Year 1999, a deficit for the first time.

The second purpose would be to "discourage healthy members from prematurely terminating membership because of the increase of the premiums," wrote Ehsa.

The proposed amendment would raise the premium from $10.00 per biweekly pay period to $11.00. An additional premium of $2.75 per pay period would be charged for each additional dependent instead of the current $2.50.

Supplemental Health Plan for Resident premiums would rise from $25.00 per biweekly pay period to $27.50. This would still cover employee and up to four dependents. The cost of an additional dependent would rise from $6.25 to $6.87.

The Supplemental Health plan for Non-Residents covering both Basic Health Plan benefits and Supplemental Plan benefits for employee and up to four dependents would rise from $35.00 to $38.50 per biweekly pay period. An additional premium of $8.80 per pay period would be charged for each additional dependent instead of the current $8.00, according to Ehsa's letter.

Furthermore, a person who has terminated enrollment may re-enroll after two years following the date of their termination from the Plan.


For further information on this release, please contact:

FSM Office of the President
Public Information: Press, Radio, Video
P.O Box 34
Palikir Station, Pohnpei, FM 96941
Tel.: (691) 320-2548/2092
Fax.: (691) 320-4356
e-mail: fsmpio@mail.fm
http://www.fsmpio.fm/