Wisconsin Examiner

Crowley Pushes Affordable Care Coverage

Open enrollment deadline for coverage is Dec. 15. Crowley, health officials urge uninsured to sign up.

By , Wisconsin Examiner - Dec 7th, 2022 11:48 am
Officials urged Wisconsinites to take advantage of Wisconsin’s open enrollment at a Tuesday press conference. Photo by Getty Images

Officials urged Wisconsinites to take advantage of Wisconsin’s open enrollment at a Tuesday press conference. Photo by Getty Images

Officials urged Wisconsinites to take advantage of Wisconsin’s open enrollment period by applying for health care through the Affordable Care Act Marketplace by Dec. 15 to ensure coverage starts Jan. 1, 2023.

The enrollment period is the annual opportunity for families, individuals and small businesses to sign up for health insurance through the Affordable Care Act Marketplace — the online platform established by the ACA where plans meet certain minimum requirements of coverage.

“Milwaukee County’s vision is to become the healthiest county in the state of Wisconsin by achieving both race and health equity and a big part of health equity is ensuring access to affordable health care coverage for all,” said Milwaukee County Executive David Crowley at a Tuesday press conference held by Protect Our Care Wisconsin. “No one should have to choose between putting food on the table and ensuring that they have health care coverage that they can afford.”

The enrollment period runs through Jan. 15, 2023, however, people must meet the December deadline for coverage that starts at the beginning of the year. Coverage for those who miss the deadline likely won’t start until February.

Potential enrollees can compare plans through the Marketplace. Wisconsin residents can also connect with navigators at Covering Wisconsin, a state-licensed nonprofit organization, who will help potential enrollees talk through options.

“We are not funded by any of the insurance companies,” said navigator Nicholas Duke. “So we can help you go over all of your options without being tied to any specific company or option. You can schedule an appointment with a navigator either via phone, Zoom [or] we are again meeting in person this year.”

Premiums for Marketplace enrollees are capped at 8.5% of the enrollee’s  income, a policy that was extended until 2025 by the 2021 Inflation Reduction Act.

According to a report from Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, around 54,000 people in Wisconsin selected plans in the ACA Marketplace during the first three weeks of this year’s enrollment period, from Nov. 1 through Nov. 19.

Approximately 212,000 Wisconsin residents opted for coverage through the Marketplace in 2022, an increase of about 20,000 people compared to the previous year. Around 312,000 Wisconsin residents remain uninsured.

“Health insurance is your ticket that opens the door to high quality care that could save your life and protect all the things you have,” said Joseph Palm, a regional director for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. “Without health insurance, a single injury could wipe out a lifetime of savings, and even routine care can become a life-changing burden for you and your family.”

Officials spotlight next week’s ACA deadline was originally published by Wisconsin Watch

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