Affordable Care Act Marketplace open enrollment begins


U.S. Rep. Kathy Castor, D-Tampa, is reminding residents that open enrollment for health insurance under the Affordable Care Act in the Marketplace begins today (Nov. 1) and goes through December 15.

"We are starting to see signs that the exchange is stabilizing given this year's rates, a new insurer entering the on-exchange market in 2019, and no insurers from last year exiting", DOI Director Jennifer Hammer said.

"It might seem like a plan is cheaper", Hattemer says, "but when you actually look at your income information and your situation there's a plan that actually gets you a lot more coverage for a lower price or similar price". Health insurance offered on the state marketplace has to meet certain requirements like accepting people with pre-existing conditions, the department said.

A release says recent federal law changes allow STLDs to expand their coverage periods from three months to 364 days and be renewable for up to 36 months. That has led state officials to advise residents to sign up early.

"So on average they have baked in about six percentage points into their premiums with the expectation that healthy people might leave", she said.

Bill Custer, a health insurance expert at Georgia State University, said that the cut in navigator funding may hurt rural areas that don't have Internet access.

"[People] may be pushing it to last minute, and it's not good because we have fewer navigators this year", said Ray. It takes effect January 1, 2019. But the law expanded Medicaid eligibility and included tax rebates for lower-income individuals to make coverage affordable.

No company offering an ACA-compliant plan will ask if a person has a pre-existing condition.

About 480,000 people bought coverage this year through Georgia's exchange, which like most state exchanges is run by the federal government.

The sign-up period comes months after a U.S. Census report showed Texas still has the largest percentage of uninsured residents in the country at 17.3 percent, almost twice the national rate. More than 16,000 residents are covered through the DC Health Link individual marketplace and more than 77,000 people are covered through its small-business marketplace.

Short-term, limited duration options may offer lower premiums, but they won't cover as much. Premiums for short-term plans are around 54 percent lower than they are for comprehensive policies, according to a new study from the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation.

Premiums in Apache, Mohave, Coconino and Navajo counties are actually higher this year, however. Average rates for the 2019 lowest-cost silver and gold plans decreased from previous year for the first time, while the lowest-cost bronze plans modestly increased. "It is confusing and there are some new products available that will further confuse people", he said.

One big change this year is the amount of neutral guidance insurance-shoppers will be able to find. "They're not meant to be long-term plans", said Packham. PHIS, formerly known as ACA Marketplace Enrollment Solutions ( provides enrollments services throughout the country, through national and regional insurance carriers. You might use an insurer's website or a third-party website.

One thing to keep in mind is that even though Congress weakened the individual mandate penalty, Obamacare is "still it is still the law of the land, it is still this huge umbrella-health legislation", Reddy said.

The marketplace is a key part of the Affordable Care Act.

Connect with us on Facebook. "There is not really a comparable other option in the market right now".