You may have heard that today, December 15, is the deadline to enroll in health coverage under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) that would start on January 1, 2016. Nearly three million people, including one million new consumers, have signed up for health coverage through the federal health insurance marketplace during this enrollment period. Florida leads the charge with 600,000 enrollees, thanks in large part to the hard work of our Affiliates!
But…if you haven’t had a chance to enroll, there’s still time! Whether you are signing up for coverage through the marketplace for the first time or are a returning customer, you still have 45 days to enroll before the January 31 deadline for coverage in 2016.
Health coverage is an important part of ensuring that you and your family stay healthy this year. Having insurance is not just for when you are sick, but can actually help prevent you from becoming sick in the first place. There are now 72 preventive services available free of charge, including screenings for chronic conditions like high blood pressure and Type 2 diabetes. By enrolling in coverage, you can invest in the well-being of yourself and your loved ones, and protect your family from unnecessary financial hardship.
If you have not yet gone to the marketplace, it is important to know that financial help is available. Eight out of 10 people who apply for coverage will qualify for financial help through the marketplace, or for free and low-cost coverage through Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP). Last year, those who qualified for financial help received an average tax credit of $270 per month.
If you are a returning consumer, it is also important to understand your 2016 options. According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, about seven in 10 returning consumers will be able to buy a plan for $75 or less in monthly premiums after tax credits in 2016. So, shop around for health coverage that best fits your needs and your budget!
As you check off your holiday shopping list, make sure to do something for yourself, and head to healthcare.gov or cuidadodesalud.gov to get covered. You can also find local help to answer any questions by visiting localhelp.healthcare.gov or by calling (800) 318-2596.