U.S. Employees Health Benefits:

Independent Agencies Offering Their Own Health Plans

HRD-89-49: Published: Mar 2, 1989. Publicly Released: Apr 3, 1989.

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In response to a congressional request, GAO provided information on independent agencies that offered their employees a health plan other than those offered under the Federal Health Benefits Program (FEHBP).

GAO found that: (1) FEHBP provides health insurance to about 4 million enrollees plus dependents, including 2.4 million active federal civilian employees and 1.6 million annuitants; (2) seven independent agencies offered health plans other than those offered under FEHBP; (3) the Tennessee Valley Authority offered its employees two self-insured health plans and did not participate in FEHBP because it operated under different personnel regulations than other government agencies; (4) the other six agencies introduced alternative health plans in the 1980s and also offered FEHBP plans; (5) not all of their employees participated in the alternative health plans because they either preferred the health maintenance organizations available through FEHBP or received coverage under their spouse's policy; and (6) the number of individuals who might choose to reestablish eligibility for retirement health benefits under FEHBP was likely to be small compared to total enrollment in FEHBP.

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