Your “Savvy Retiree” Newsletter for December 2022

Summary of the year 2022

The year 2022 began with a curfew that ended on 17 January and an extension of the vaccine passport to certain businesses. Today, there are no health measures except in health care facilities where masks are mandatory.

The population is advised to exercise caution when traveling. The COVID-19 border emergency measures have also ended. Risk levels of travel health advisories have returned to normal. However, the Government of Canada encourages travelers to visit before planning a trip.

However, the risks of getting COVID-19 or any other respiratory virus should not be underestimated. Vigilance by all insured is required.

Compensation Fund for Customers of Travel Agents

We are still at a stalemate on this issue. The Fund has begun reimbursing travelers who have had to cancel their trip due to COVID-19 but refuses to reimburse the insurer (SSQ) who compensated the insured with our funds. Several requests have been made to Conseil du trésor (SCT) officials for Sonia Lebel, President of the Conseil du trésor, to meet with her counterpart, Simon Jolin-Barette, head of the Office de la protection du consommateur, to explain that the money given to insured persons comes from our own plan. At present, SSQ Assurance estimates that Fund owes us more than $1 million. If the SCT does not intervene at our convenience, we will assess the alternatives available to win our legitimate claim for reimbursement.

Select Committee

Meetings continued at a regular pace via videoconference between SCT representatives, retirees and assets representatives, and the insurer on various topics related to group insurance coverage. On occasion, we deal with certain contentious files brought to us by insured persons. Thanks to the work of the coordinator, Ms. Line St-Cyr, some issues were resolved in the insured person’s interest.

Sustainability of the Group Insurance Plan for Retirees

Retirement representatives at the CCR discussed the possibility for the Quebec government to transfer the Y9999-R group insurance contract to a cooperative to ensure the sustainability of the group plan for all insured persons, whether they are 65 or under, should the latter decide to close the plan.

The transfer of insured persons to a new policyholder should provide that insured persons under 65 years of age will be relieved of the obligation to insure their drugs with an insurer until their 65th birthday and that they are no longer considered to be a specified group linked by an old employment relationship.

The Conseil du trésor appears to be prepared to financially support several steps to facilitate the establishment of this body as the policy holder for retired public and parapublic government executives.

Three prerequisites were identified at this meeting:

  • The SCT will need to have surveyed plan members so that they can know and evaluate the alternatives they will be offered and decide whether they will exercise a right of transformation. Survey results will be delivered to retiree representatives.

  • The SCT must have the assurance of the RAMQ that if the procedure is that it will recognize the organization as a policyholder and that plan members will not be considered a specified group.

  • Validation with the AMF of the authority of the COOP, if necessary be able to act as a life and health insurance representative.

A law firm advises us on the legal requirements for transferring data for a survey.  This same firm will be able to represent us at the RAMQ should the SCT respond positively to the first prerequisite, which will allow us to propose serious alternatives to all members of the retiree plan.

We encourage you to subscribe to the CCR subscriber list to be informed of the latest developments in this crucial file for the future of our collective system. 

New Rates in Force on January 1, 2023

On August 26, SSQ Financial Group filed the terms of renewal of the group insurance plan for retirees of the Quebec government’s public and parapublic sector managers with Secrétariat du Conseil du trésor (SCT) representatives and retiree representatives on January 1, 2023. According to our actuary advisor, our plan is in excellent health with a stabilization fund at the maximum level that is equivalent to 15% of premiums.

A few meetings were held between the consultant actuary, the spokesperson, the spokesperson’s assistant and the coordinator to prepare a response to SSQ. This project was presented to SCT and approved. After a day and a half of negotiation, we came to an agreement.

The objective was to minimize premium increases. For this reason, we have decided not to enhance the protections regarding the cost of reimbursing health care professionals for the enriched plan. If the 2023 results were more than satisfactory, we could consult with insured persons to make improvements to the eligible costs per treatment for this group of professionals.

Pricing changes 2023

Accident and health insurance plan

The rate variation applicable to each of the categories is shown in the following table:







These changes include any changes to the pooling fee, as well as a reduction related to the new policy transition to biosimilar drugs.

The cost of pooling eligible drugs is increased from 2.40% to 2.30% of premiums and the annual limit is increased to $585,000.00 per 12-month period per certificate. We remind you that pooling was introduced to protect us from the cost of "expensive drugs" that are more on the market. The risk is now shared between members and the insurer. The cost is included in the premium, which partly explains the increase in premiums for one group and a smaller decrease for the other groups concerned.

Life insurance plan

The rate is reduced by 4.0% for the life insurance of the retired member and additional life insurance of the spouse of the retired member.

The rate is increased by 20.0% for the life insurance of the spouse and dependent children of the retired member.

To find out the actual pricing that applies to your situation, we suggest you consult the new brochure produced by the insurer. Link to the leaflet "Your plan « At a glance » on January 1, 2023"


Contractual amendments as of 1 January 2023

     Treatments provided by a famly member

     Expenses for treatments provided by a family member are now eligible, provided this person does not ordinarilly reside with the insured.

     Trip Cancellation Insurance

     The maximum reimbursement for expenses incurred by an insured whose trip is cancelled or interrupted is now $ 10 000.

Best wishes for 2023

During the holiday season, your representatives wish you festive meetings, rewarding trips in a safe environment.

We wish you Happy Holidays and a Happy New Year 2023 and Health.


Daniel Dubé, ACR’s Retiree Spokesperson