How You Can Get Covered Under the ACA
While most Marylanders get health insurance through their employer or through government programs like Medicare and Medicaid, for those who shop on the individual market, I wanted to share some information about the status of the Affordable Care Act and how to enroll in a new plan for 2018.
First, despite efforts by President Trump and Republicans in Congress to repeal Obamacare, it remains the law of the land. However, they continue to try and sabotage it. President Trump canceled all digital advertising for ACA enrollment, he cut TV ads by 75 percent and slashed funding that was intended to assist consumers signing up for health insurance. Then, President Trump recently announced that he is opting not to fund subsidies that help pay out-of-pocket health care costs for low-income people. As if that wasn’t enough, he also cut in half the amount of time Americans have to sign up for coverage.
That is why it’s more important than ever for me to share this information and for you to pass it on to anyone who may need it. Maryland’s open enrollment period to purchase health insurance on the individual market begins tomorrow.
From November 1 until December 15, you can sign up for a health plan that’s best for you. If you sign up during this period, you can get coverage that starts on January 1, 2018.
Coverage can be more affordable than you think, because financial help is available. During last year’s enrollment period, more than 75 percent of Marylanders qualified for financial help – for most people, that meant they could find insurance premiums between $50 and $100 per month.
It is also very important for consumers to shop around and consider various plans. The Maryland Health Connection just updated 2018 plans and prices last week so your costs may have changed. Shopping for a new plan may save you money next year.
For details about available plans or for assistance in understanding your options, please visit https://www.marylandhealthconnection.gov/ or call 1-855-642-8572.
If you’re interested in attending an in-person enrollment event, the Maryland Health Connection will hold statewide “Beat the Rush” events this weekend. These events will provide free help with health coverage enrollment. Learn more at https://www.marylandhealthconnection.gov/beattherush/.
Congressman John P. Sarbanes
Maryland’s Third Congressional District