Encourages all to visit healthcare.gov for more information and to sign up before Dec. 15
HARRISBURG – Gov. Tom Wolf has reminded Pennsylvanians that open enrollment for health insurance plans under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) is taking place now through Dec. 15.
“The enrollment period is shorter this year, so whether you’re enrolling in a plan for the first time, looking to change your plan or want to see what your options are, go to healthcare.gov to find out what plan is right for you and your family,” Wolf said.
Open enrollment has some changes this year, including:
- The open enrollment period is 1 to Dec. 15(in the past, open enrollment ended Jan. 31).
- Funding for open enrollment and consumer help has been reduced.
- govwill be down from midnight – 12 p.m. on most Sundays for maintenance during the open enrollment period.
There is a concern that the shorter enrollment period and the reduced funding for open enrollment will decrease the number of people signing up for health insurance. This year Pennsylvania recorded a record-low uninsured rate of 5.6 percent.
“We want to continue with the success of record-low rates of uninsured,” Wolf said. “To help ease some of the concerns, the Pennsylvania Insurance Department partnered with insurance plans, healthcare providers, consumer advocates and others to develop common messaging and coordinated plans to help people enroll.”
To find out more, visit the Pennsylvania Insurance Department’s open enrollment page, with myriad information, including a Consumers’ Checkbook plan comparison tool that takes you through a few simple steps to find the right medical plan, including comparisons of every medical plan available ON and OFF Exchange, compared on total estimated cost (not just premiums or deductibles) and more. Consumers can also use the tool to find out if they can get help paying for coverage.
The site also includes a “How to Buy Health Insurance” guide and video, and 10 Things to Know about Open Enrollment, including that the Affordable Care Act is still law, so benefits and consumer protections are still in place and you may still have to pay a penalty if you do not purchase coverage for 2018; four out of five people qualify for financial assistances; and consumers should use caution when shopping as some companies use misleading marketing to state or imply they are ACA-compliant when they are not.
“The Insurance Department put together a comprehensive package of information for consumers and I encourage all Pennsylvanians shopping for health insurance to visit the department’s site for information and any help needed as they make this important decision for themselves and their families,” Wolf said.