“If you like your health insurance plan, you can keep it” — now for an additional two years!!
Implementation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) continues to change. In November, 2013, the federal government announced that it would continue its “transitional policy” for an additional two plan years. Then it became the responsibility of each state’s Department of Insurance to determine how the transitional policy would be administered.
On April 30th, the Nebraska Department of Insurance (DOI) issued a statement indicating that insurance companies may offer to policyholders who have health plans that were issued prior to 1/1/14, the option to extend those policies through October 1, 2016.
This decision impacts individuals and small businesses that chose to keep their 2013 health insurance plans rather than change to an ACA compliant plan in 2014. The DOI gave insurance companies the option of offering to extend coverage beyond 2014. Policyholders can contact their insurance company to find out if extended coverage will be available.
Nebraska enrollment numbers
Reported by the US Department of Health and Human Services:
• 42,975 Nebraskans enrolled in health insurance plans through the Health Insurance Marketplace between Oct 1 and March 31.
• 87% qualified for federal assistance in paying their premiums (Premium Tax Credit) or were eligible for a reduction in their out-of-pocket expenses (Cost Share Reduction subsidy).
• 40% of the new enrollees were younger than 35
These figures do not include those who enrolled in an employer provided health insurance plan or who enrolled directly with an insurance company and did not use the Marketplace.
In August, 2013, HHS.gov reported that Nebraska had 195,700 people who were uninsured and eligible for coverage through the Marketplace (see http://www.hhs.gov/healthcare/facts/bystate/ne.html).
The enrollment figures do not indicate how many of the 42,975 that enrolled were previously uninsured. Many of those who purchased health insurance through the Marketplace were insured, but changed their coverage to take advantage of federal financial assistance.
If 75% of the Nebraska enrollments were for those who were uninsured, it would mean approximately 32,200 of the 195,700 who were eligible now have health insurance coverage.
by Chris McPike, Vice President
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