LACERS BOARD UPDATE: LACERS Improves Health Benefits As Retirees Focus on Fitness


Michael Wilkinson, LACERS/Legal Representative

By Michael R. Wilkinson
LACERS/Legal Representative

The LACERS Benefits Administration Committee, which I chair, has just approved improvements to our health plans as part of its renewal of the health, dental and vision benefits for our members.

In coordination with the LACERS health benefits staff, the Committee is always looking at opportunities to improve our plan to respond to needs including the special challenges that members have experienced due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Committee approved a total 2021 premium rate increase for all the current health, dental and vision plans of only 0.67 percent, even after including the increased benefits funding. In addition to the favorable rates for all the plans to fund these benefits, the recently added Internal Revenue Code Section 115 trust was used to fund the changes to the Kaiser HMO (under 65) plan.

Several improvements were approved to the plans. The Kaiser HMO (under 65) has added the free gym membership plan (Active and Fit) that has previously been offered as a free benefit to the other health plans. The transportation benefit, which will provide transportation to medical appointments and to get medication and groceries, has been added to the Kaiser Senior Advantage and the United Health Care plans.

Now is a time when I want to thank all my fellow Retirees for what you are doing to stay healthy, particularly in the stressful time of living in a COVID-19 world. The health plans we enjoy, and the increased benefits, are possible only with the cooperation of our members. We get lower rates for our insurance and can afford to add the benefits because you care about getting your exercise, visiting your doctors, taking your medications and eating right. Keep up the good work!