03 Nov Make the Most of Health Insurance Open Enrollment!
Open Enrollment for the Health Insurance Marketplace is now open!
Having a good health insurance plan can be a real life and wallet saver and as you may know it is also a requirement! The Open Enrollment period for 2016 health care coverage runs from November 1, 2015, to January 31, 2016. If you want your coverage to begin by January 1, 2016, you have to enroll or change your plan by December 15, 2015.
The requirement to have health insurance coverage is often referred to as the Individual Mandate Penalty. This penalty almost doubles in 2016, for those who don’t have health insurance, to $695 per person or 2.5% of your household income, whichever amount is more.
Even if you already have a health care plan that works for you, it is always good to compare different plans. Shopping around can’t hurt, even if you have health insurance coverage through your employer. Plans and pricing can change every year, so you may be able to find new coverage that is more affordable or better fits your needs.
Triage Cancer offers a free tool to you find health insurance options as well as information about other benefits you may be eligible for at the federal, state, and local levels.
By taking the time to compare your current plan with new options, you may find a cheaper plan or find out that you’re entitled to other benefits, like financial assistance. Based on where you live and your household income you may qualify for your state’s Medicaid program or a premium tax credit that lowers your out-of-pocket costs when you chose a health insurance plan from a private health insurance company.
5 key things to look for when choosing a health insurance plan:
- Monthly premium cost
- Deductible cost
- Out-of-pocket maximum cost
- Are my health care providers covered by the plan
- Are my prescription drugs covered by the plan
We know that these terms and choosing the right health insurance policy can be confusing, so to answer any questions you may have watch our latest FREE webinar recording that covers tips on how to choose a plan that works for you.
Progress has been made on increasing the number of people with health insurance. According to the US Census Bureau, in 2009, before the ACA was passed, about 15.7% of the population was uninsured. Recently, a study done by the CDC using 2015 Census data showed that the total uninsured rate has dropped to 9.2%. In California alone, 4.5 million new people enrolled in health care plans between 2013 and 2015. Even though these numbers are cause for excitement, there is still work to be done. If enrollment rates continue to increase, insured patients can look forward to their health needs being met, and less problems paying for health services than when they were uninsured.
There are so many benefits to selecting the perfect health care plan for you and your family, be sure to make the most of this year’s Open Enrollment and discover the plan that will best suit your needs. Triage Cancer will be posting valuable information about health insurance coverage throughout Open Enrollment.
Here are some other helpful tools:
- Guide to the Marketplace: https://marketplace.cms.gov/outreach-and-education/get-covered-a-one-page-guide-to-the-marketplace.pdf
- Marketplace Application Checklist: https://marketplace.cms.gov/outreach-and-education/marketplace-application-checklist.pdf
- 4 Ways to Get Marketplace Coverage: https://marketplace.cms.gov/technical-assistance-resources/logo-and-infographics/ways-to-get-covered-ds.pdf
- ObamaCare Enrollment Numbers. http://obamacarefacts.com/sign-ups/obamacare-enrollment-numbers/. Accessed October 28, 2015.
- Insure the Uninsured Project Blog Post. Open Enrollment: Lessons from the Field; October 20, 2015. http://itup.org/blog/2015/10/20/open-enrollment-lessons-from-the-field/. Accessed: October 28, 2015.
- Insure the Uninsured Project Blog Post. Summary of the Kaiser Family Foundation Survey of California’s Uninsured; August 11, 2015. http://itup.org/blog/2015/08/11/summary-of-the-kaiser-family-foundation-survey-of-californias-uninsured/