FROM THE REFERENCE DESK
AFFORDABLE CARE ACT
OPEN ENROLLMENT OCTOBER 1, 2013 – MARCH 31, 2014
Visit Michigan’s Health Insurance Marketplace @ HEALTHCARE.GOV
The Affordable Care Act is a health insurance reform law signed by President Obama in 2010.
Pieces of the reform have been rolling out since 2010, and the newest piece of the legislation began on October 1, 2013 when open enrollment in the Health Insurance Marketplace began. Open enrollment will make affordable and qualified health insurance benefit plans available to individuals, families, and small businesses who do not currently have coverage or to those that want to compare their own coverage to see if they can get lower costs based on income. Health insurance plans vary by state.
The Monroe County Library System will be at the forefront of Open Enrollment with public computer access and staff to guide your computer use.
The Way It Will Work
- Michigan residents will go to https://www.healthcare.gov
- Beginning October 1st, users will have access to the application process three ways: by computer, by mail, or in-person with the help of a Navigator or other qualified helper.
- Users will begin the process by inputting income, and household information.
- Users will then see a comparison of all the plans for which they are qualified, and find out whether or not they qualify for the tax credit that will help offset their premium cost
- Users will enroll by choosing a plan.
- The initial enrollment period will run through March 31, 2014. In the future, enrollment periods will only run from October 15 through December 7 of any given year, and coverage will begin on January 1 of the next calendar year.
Healthcare Navigators are certified to assist consumers in enrolling themselves, their families, or their small businesses. Michigan has been divided into 10 regions, with each region having at least one trained Navigator. According to Enroll Michigan, Monroe County is in region 8. The Navigator for Monroe County is available to offer free assistance by appointment only at:
Monroe County Health Department
Sarah Mattimoe: Certified Navigator
2353 S. Custer Rd.
Monroe, MI 48161
How Can I Get Ready To Enroll In The Marketplace?
Documents Needed To Apply
What Are The Essential Health Benefits The Marketplace Insurance Will Cover?
Affordable Care Act: What It Means For Michigan
WebMD’s Health Insurance Cost Calculator – Find out if you are eligible for a government subsidy without inputting personal data. Type in estimated annual income, age of the oldest person on the policy, number of people that will be on the policy, whether or not health insurance is offered from an employer, and zip code. The result will show whether a user qualifies for a subsidy, how much the annual premium will cost, and the penalty to be paid if uninsured. A link will take users to WebMD’s Health Insurance Advisor to look at plans, but after checking to see if they qualify for a subsidy, consumers should go to the HEALTHCARE.GOV website to register and purchase their plan.