2019 Health Plans

Important note: Retiree medical benefits, if available to you, are provided by your former employer. The following information has been provided by the County of Marin. MCERA will continue to update this webpage as the County makes more information available.


Informational Meeting for Retirees on September 13

The County of Marin will provide information for retirees on the new medical plans on Thursday, September 13, 2018, at 8:00 AM at MCERA's office.

New Plans Effective January 1, 2019

The County’s current Anthem Blue Cross PPO medical plan has grown increasingly unaffordable in recent years, with large double-digit rate increases each year since 2015. Therefore, the County has decided to terminate current Anthem PPO plan at the end of the 2018 calendar year. This means benefit coverage for retirees on the Anthem plan will change effective January 1, 2019.

One-Time Open Enrollment for Anthem Retirees

For retirees enrolled in the County’s current Anthem PPO plan, the county will provide a one-time open enrollment so that current Anthem PPO plan participants may select a new benefit plan based on their Medicare status. The open enrollment will take place October 15 through November 9, 2018. The enrollment options include:

  • Medicare Retirees:
    • United Health Care (default for all Medicare retirees in the current Anthem PPO plan)
    • Kaiser Senior Advantage
  • Non-Medicare Retirees:
    • Teamsters Local 856 Health and Welfare Trust PPO (default for non-Medicare Anthem retirees)
    • Kaiser HMO
    • Western Health Advantage HMO

Frequently Asked Questions

Why did the County replace the Anthem Blue Cross PPO plan?

The Anthem Blue Cross PPO medical plan grew increasingly unaffordable in recent years, with double digit rate increases each year since 2015. In order that Anthem plan participants not suffer such large premium increases, the County had used funds from the Anthem Blue Cross Premium Stabilization Reserve (PSR) to “buy-down” large rate increases and therefore pass along more affordable rate increase to plan participants (plan participants consist of both active employees and retirees). With insufficient funds remaining in the PSR to “buy-down” rates for 2019, annual costs would likely have exceeded $20,000 for one person under 65 and $9,800 for one person enrolled in Medicare. That equates to a more than $1,800 monthly premium for one person under 65 and an $800 monthly premium for one person enrolled in Medicare.

When is the current Anthem plan changing?

The current Anthem plan will terminate December 31, 2018.

Does this impact retirees of MCERA-covered employers other than Marin County?

Retirees of the following employers also participate in the County-sponsored medical plans:

  • LAFCO
  • Marin City Community Services District
  • Marin/Sonoma Mosquito & Vector Control District
  • Marin Superior Court
  • Southern Marin Fire Protection District
  • Tamalpais Community Services District
Which new plans are being offered in 2019?

Western Health Advantage HMO and Teamsters Local 856 Health and Welfare Trust Anthem PPO will be available for non-Medicare retirees. United Health Care PPO will be available for Medicare retirees.

Are the Kaiser plans changing?

No. Coverage in the Kaiser Silver and Kaiser Low plans remains the same. However, there will be premium changes effective with the 2019 plan year.

I’m a retiree on the current Anthem plan. What happens to my medical coverage at the end of this year?

For retirees who are enrolled in the County’s current Anthem PPO plan, the County will allow a one-time open enrollment so that current Anthem PPO plan participants may select one of the following plans based on their Medicare status.

Medicare Retirees

  • Medicare retirees who are in the current Anthem PPO plan will default into the United Healthcare plan.
  • Alternatively, Medicare retirees may choose one of the Kaiser Senior Advantage plans if they live in a service area.

Non-Medicare Retirees

  • Non-Medicare retirees may enroll in the non-Medicare plans offered by the Teamsters Trust Anthem PPO, Kaiser or Western Health Advantage (subject to service area restrictions).
I’m a retiree on a Kaiser plan. Will I be able to choose one of the new plans?

No. The open enrollment period and new plans selection is only available to retirees on the current Anthem plan. However, if you move out of a Kaiser coverage area you will be allowed to select a new plan.

Is this an open enrollment for all retirees?

No. The open enrollment is only for retirees on the current Anthem plan.

Are there any changes to the employer-provided subsidies (Benefit Plans)?

No. The Benefit Plan subsidies are not changing.

What coverage levels are provided with the new plans?

The County is preparing coverage summaries for members to compare plan options. As soon as these documents are available they will be posted on the County's Retiree Health Information website. MCERA will also make the information available to retirees at that time.

What are the premiums, deductibles and copays for the new plans?

The County is preparing this information. As soon as these documents are available they will be posted on the County's Retiree Health Information website. MCERA will also make the information available to retirees at that time.

What are the service areas for the new plans?

The County is preparing this information. As soon as these documents are available they will be posted on the County's Retiree Health Information website. MCERA will also make the information available to retirees at that time.

Who can I contact if I need help?

The County intends to make a telephone service available to assist retirees with the transition from the current Anthem plan to one of the new plans. is preparing this information. As soon as this information is available it will be posted on the County's Retiree Health Information website. MCERA will also make the information available to retirees at that time. You may also contact Shaun Meyers (Human Resources) by email at smeyers@marincounty.org or by phone at (415) 473-6111.