TRS Board of Trustees approved significant changes to plan designs and
benefits for TRS-ActiveCare participants for the 2020-21 plan year, and approved new rates and one
provider change for the three HMOs that serve certain regions of the
After meeting with participating school districts and stakeholders in February, the TRS staff began working on major changes to ActiveCare in an effort to address the myriad concerns about the plan, ranging from high costs to low benefits. It is important to note that the main problem is the lack of adequate funding from the state, which has tied TRS’s hands in developing more affordable options. But several changes were approved today to provide a small measure of relief.
Overall, the goals were to lower premiums for child/family coverage where possible, allow broader access to providers, lower deductibles for individuals in family coverage, and provide a new, lower cost option.
ActiveCare will now include four options:
A significant change for HD, and a benefit for Primary and Primary Plus, is that for dependent coverage, any individual in the plan can reach the deductible and that person’s benefits will kick in. It is not required that all family members meet the deductible before an individual’s benefits begin.
For the high deductible (HD) plan, premiums will rise slightly for employee only and employee/spouse coverage, but will decrease slightly for employee/child and family coverage.
ActiveCare-2 rates will increase nearly 10% at each level.
Rates for Primary Plus are similar to, but less than, those for the now-eliminated ActiveCare Select.
Rates for Primary are the lowest available among the four options.
The charts below provide information on the benefits and premium rates for the four plans. (If you have trouble reading the charts, click here.)
The three HMOs currently operating will continue for 2020-21, with mostly minor changes. The most significant difference is that the HMO currently operating in the Panhandle and most West Texas counties is switching to Blue Cross Blue Shield, with some accompanying changes in co-pays and co-insurance.
Benefits for Baylor Scott & White and South Texas BCBSTX will remain the same.
Rate changes for the three HMOs were a mixed bag. The South Texas BCBSTX plan will see very small premium increases ($5-10); Baylor Scott and White will provide an $8 decrease in employee-only premiums but increases at other levels; and West Texas BCBS premiums are decreasing across the board, ranging from -$27 for employee-only coverage to -$129 for employee/spouse.
(If you have trouble reading the chart, click here.)
More information is available on ActiveCare at TRS's website.