Benefits Boost

Take our quiz to see if the new health benefits apply to you.

The Office of Personnel Management this month announced federal workers will see an average 7.2 percent premium increase on plans offered through the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program. In addition to rising health care costs, OPM also has attributed the increase to new benefits for plan participants.

Not all 2011 FEHBP plans will offer identical benefits. According to OPM, all insurance providers must cover preventive services and screenings without requiring co-insurance; offer smoking cessation programs that will include four counseling sessions per quit attempt (with two quit attempts per year); eliminate annual and lifetime dollar limits on medication and treatment; and extend coverage to adult dependent children up to age 26.

Some feds, however, are not happy about paying for new programs that don't affect them directly. Take our quiz to see which benefits apply to you.

1. Do you have dependent children under the age of 26?
A. Nope, no kids.
B. My children are under 22, [previously, health coverage expired at age 22 for dependents, except for those unable to support themselves due to a mental or physical disability], or no longer rely on my health plan.
C. Yes. They are over age 18, but haven't left the nest just yet and/or are no longer students.

2. Do you smoke?
A. No
B. Occasionally
C. Yes

3. If you chose B or C, have you tried tobacco cessation programs?
A. No, I'm not trying to quit.
B. I've thought about it, but the cost and limits on counseling sessions and prescription drugs are deterrents.
C. Yes, but I had to stop because my plan wouldn't pay for additional cessation efforts.

4. Would you and/or your dependents use no-cost obesity screenings, nutrition and exercise programs, or healthy lifestyle monitoring tools?
A. I don't need these programs. I'm fit as a fiddle.
B. My family and I are healthy right now, but it wouldn't hurt to have access to preventive services.
C. Absolutely. It's hard to make smart food choices, get regular exercise and practice healthy habits!

5. Will you and/or your dependents require future immunizations or health screenings for school, travel, work or other reasons?
A. No, my kids and I have long since completed those requirements, and I don't foresee a need for any in the future.
B. I don't anticipate any need, but I'd like to keep my options open.
C. Yes, I have young children, travel a lot and would benefit from these services that don't require co-payments.

Ready to check your score? Click here for the answers

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