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Washington, D.C. - On January 23, 2006, the United States Office of Personnel Management announced the Postmasters Benefit Plan (PBP) offered to federal employees under the Federal Employees Health Benefits (FEHB) Program would be dropped from the program and took immediate action to transfer the nearly 8,000 participants to another plan.
The 6,000 retirees and annuitants enrolled in the PBP were transferred by OPM into the Blue Cross Blue Shield Service Benefit Plan Standard option (BCBS) within 24 hours of OPM's announcement regarding PBP. The remaining enrollees, nearly 2,000 active federal employees, were enrolled into BCBS the next day.
"We felt it was important to move quickly to ensure all employees and annuitants had health coverage, hence the transfer of all those affected into Blue Cross," said Linda M. Springer, Director of OPM.
OPM is providing an FEHB Open Season during the month of February so those affected will be able to choose from all available FEHB plans as they would during regular Open Season.
"Our top concern was always the federal employees and retirees and annuitants who would be impacted. We acted quickly to ensure no disruption in health coverage for anyone who would have been affected by the termination," Springer added. "The special Open Season will be held expressly for those who were impacted and would prefer to make another choice."
In addition to the special Open Season, OPM has taken several strategic steps to ensure a seamless transfer of federal employees impacted by the termination of PBP (see below).
"I am extremely proud of OPM's vigilance in safeguarding the health benefits of Federal employees and annuitants and the immediate response to ensuring continuous and reliable coverage," Director Springer said.
United States Office of Personnel Management
Washington, D.C. 20415
To ensure that the approximately 8000 impacted employees and retirees are provided seamless healthcare coverage, OPM has taken these steps -
Six thousand of those enrollees were transferred within 24 hours. The remaining enrollees were transferred by close of business on January 26. No PBP enrollees experienced a break in health care coverage.
Our mission is to Recruit, Retain and Honor a World-Class Workforce to Serve the American People. OPM supports U.S. agencies with personnel services and policy leadership including staffing tools, guidance on labor-management relations and programs to improve work force performance.