Insurance Marketplace Enrollment Could Go Smoother This Year

Nov 14, 2014

Credit healthcare.gov

 The open enrollment period for insurance plans through the Affordable Care Act  starts Saturday. 

Not a lot has changed since the insurance marketplace’s first open-enrollment  period. All health plans must still offer the same essential benefits – prescriptions,  maternity care, hospitalization. 

In Allen County however there are more than double the available insurance  providers offering plans. The sign-up process itself may see the biggest change this time around. 

“First of all the federal website is going to work better than it did the last time,  and that was a real problem last year with all the glitches in the website. So we’re  looking forward to that,” says Mary Halpert, president of Fort Wayne’s Neighborhood Health Clinic.

Halpert says the key thing to know this year is that those who enrolled last year, will need  to re-enroll. Say “I want to keep my same plan” or “I want a different one.” 

The clinic’s enrollment specialist, Cathy Pollick, has been raising awareness for  the open enrollment date. 

“I think it’s just we’ve seen it now so we know to expect the unexpected," says Pollick, "and to  kind of go with it, and encourage people to just keep at it, and you can make it  through, and we’re here to help.”

Anyone can apply for an insurance plan through the marketplace. Those between  100 and 400 percent of the poverty line are eligible for subsidies. Cathy Pollick says people can sign up on their own through the  website healthcare.gov, but if they come into the clinic for assistance, they’ll need  to bring their I.D., tax forms, and email address.