Spring 2017

Denominational Health Plan 2016 Annual Report

The Denominational Health Plan (DHP) was established by General Convention Resolution 2009-A177 in an effort to control the rising costs of healthcare and to provide equal access to and parity of funding for healthcare benefits for eligible clergy and lay employees in the domestic dioceses. Pursuant to General Convention Resolution 2012-B026, we released the 2016 DHP Annual Report, which you can view here. In 2016, The Episcopal Church Medical Trust (Medical Trust) advanced a number of key DHP initiatives, including:

  • Maintaining robust participation in the DHP, with approximately 95% of all eligible clergy and lay employees participating in a Medical Trust plan or obtaining healthcare coverage through other approved sources.
  • Continuing to control the rising cost of healthcare, with the result that since 2009 most dioceses have received annual rate reductions or only low single-digit annual increases.
  • Supporting dioceses in determining the most optimal array of plans to meet the needs of their groups.
  • Maintaining a strong financial position with rates that are competitive in most markets.
  • Continuing to advance the issue of parity of healthcare between clergy and lay employees.
  • Remaining compliant with the Affordable Care Act (ACA) by implementing required tax reporting and plan design changes, while continuing to assess and plan for solutions should the “Cadillac Tax” be implemented in 2020.
  • Absorbing $626,000 in required ACA fees rather than passing these fees along to participating dioceses and institutions.

2017 Outlook

While there remains uncertainty around legislative action on the ACA, we estimate that Medical Trust rates in 2017 will be more competitive than the local exchanges in 90% of the groups we cover. With respect to the remaining groups, we expect the Medical Trust rates to be no more than 10% above the average local exchange rate. We will continue to explore additional opportunities to provide greater equity in healthcare contribution costs among dioceses without materially impacting the competitiveness of the DHP at local and regional levels.