Federal Health Insurance Exchange 2020 Open Enrollment Overview
If you need health insurance, you can enroll at HealthCare.Gov. But hurry, the deadline to enroll in a plan is December 15th – so don’t delay! 

There’s a lot of confusion about the state of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), also known as ObamaCare, but the truth is that the ACA is still the law of the land. Its omprehensive health coverage, including key consumer protections like no discrimination against people with pre-existing health conditions, is still available to consumers who need health coverage. 

Go to HealthCare.gov and CuidadodeSalud.gov (for Spanish-speakers) to review 2020 plans and prices. If you don’t enroll by December 15, you can’t get 2020 coverage unless you qualify for a Special Enrollment Period.

  1. When: November 1, 2019 – December 15, 2019 (some states may extend their deadlines, but in order to have coverage that begins on January 1, you must enroll by December 15)

  2. Where: HealthCare.Gov Always start with HealthCare.Gov. If your state uses its own website, HealthCare.Gov will guide you there. HealthCare.Gov or your state-based marketplace can only sell ACA plans, so you can be rest-assured knowing you’re getting a comprehensive plan that will be there for you when you need it. 

  3. What: Comprehensive coverage at an affordable price. HealthCare.Gov plans must include key benefits like mental health care, maternity care, prescription drug coverage, and hospitalization services. In addition to good coverage, most marketplace shoppers will qualify for a discount based on their income. Last year, more than 8 in 10 shoppers could get a plan for less than $100/month.  

  4. Why: Peace of mind. Financial security. Access to comprehensive care. There are so many reasons to sign up for affordable, comprehensive coverage, join the millions who have gained health insurance thanks to the ACA!  

  5. How: Enroll online, over the phone, or in-person. Log on to the official ACA marketplace at HealthCare.Gov, or CuidadodeSalud.Gov, call the marketplace call center at 1-800-318-2596 or make an appointment for in-person assistance through the Get Covered Connector.

Dispelling Myths 

There’s a lot of confusion among both the remaining uninsured and current marketplace consumers about what exactly has changed, what hasn’t, and what are the best options for enrolling in coverage. We’re busting some of the most common myths about the ACA – check them out below. 

Myth #1: Financial help to lower premiums and out-of-pocket costs is no longer available.  FALSE. Financial assistance is still available for low and middle-income consumers to help lower the cost of their plan. In fact, more than 8 out of 10 consumers last year qualified for a tax credit. 
Myth #2: The marketplace is not stable and premiums are skyrocketing. FALSE. In fact, premium price increases for 2020 are expected to be much lower than in previous years (4% lower, nationally), and some states will even see price decreases. Increased insurer participation also indicates that the marketplace is stabilizing.
Myth #3: I am no longer protected from discrimination for having a pre-existing condition. FALSE. All of the consumer protections created by the ACA are still intact, and all plans sold by HealthCare.Gov must provide comprehensive coverage, and cannot charge a consumer more because of their health status or medical history. Plans outside the ACA marketplace don’t have to offer the same protections, so always make sure to use HealthCare.Gov when enrolling in coverage. 

 

Tax Credits and Affordability

The ACA marketplace is designed to help consumers who don’t have health insurance through their employer or through a government program like Medicaid or Medicare afford individual coverage. To make sure coverage is affordable, most low to middle-income shoppers will qualify for a discount based on their income to lower the cost of their plan. Last year, 85 percent of enrollees received a tax credit to lower their monthly premiums. And, 4.5 million Americans qualified for a $0 bronze plan – that means they could get a plan with no monthly premium!

If your annual income falls between 100 percent and 400 percent of the federal poverty line (FPL), you could qualify for a tax credit. And, if your income is less than 250 percent FPL, you could qualify for additional discounts that lower your out of pocket costs, like your deductible. Check out the chart below to see if you qualify:

If your annual income falls between 100 percent and 400 percent of the federal poverty line (FPL), you could qualify for a tax credit. And, if your income is less than 250 percent FPL, you could qualify for additional discounts that lower your out of pocket costs, like your deductible.

Advantages of Buying a Health Insurance Plan on HealthCare.gov

Most marketplace shoppers will qualify for financial help to lower their costs, too. In fact, 85 percent of current enrollees receive a tax credit to help lower their monthly premiums, and most pay less than $100/month for their plan.

And this year, there are new plans available at new prices. Even if you’ve looked before, it’s important to check out your options – coverage might be more affordable than you think.

Already covered? Then help us spread the word about open enrollment and make sure your friends and family #getcovered too. There is far less support for outreach and advertising this year, so it’s up to all of us to get the word out. Ask your friends if they’re covered, post on social media, and remind everyone that December 15th is the final deadline to sign up for coverage in 2020. Go to HealthCare.Gov to enroll today!

 

 

For questions to AMHP, please email advocacy@amhp.us

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