Special enrollment period for private health plans for this year ends August 15, extra financial help can make coverage more affordable
AUGUSTA— Governor Janet Mills and Commissioner of the Maine Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) Jeanne Lambrew are urging Maine people to act now to take advantage of their options for affordable health insurance coverage before the Special Enrollment Period (SEP) for Affordable Care Act (ACA) health plans ends on Sunday, August 15.
In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Biden Administration extended the Special Enrollment Period, originally due to end on May 15, to give consumers more time to take advantage of new savings through the American Rescue Plan.
“I encourage Maine people who are uninsured or looking for more affordable health care to visit HealthCare.gov to explore their options,” said Governor Mills. “The Special Enrollment Period closes in just a couple of days, so please don’t miss this opportunity to sign up or review your coverage and be sure to spread the word to your family, friends, and neighbors too – especially if they’ve been hit hard in this difficult year and have lost their health insurance.”
“If you’re uninsured or struggling to pay for health care, don’t wait to check out your options for high-quality coverage at lower costs,” said DHHS Commissioner Jeanne Lambrew. “With only days left to enroll in a private Marketplace plan for the rest of 2021, now is the time to visit HealthCare.gov to protect your health and the health of your loved ones at potentially much lower costs.”
At the start of 2021, 59,738 Maine people were enrolled through the health insurance Marketplace.From February to July, 9,145 more people have signed up during the Special Enrollment Period that ends on Sunday.
Now, and until midnight on August 15, Maine people can newly apply for coverage. Those already covered through HealthCare.gov should reapply to see if they are eligible for a lower-cost plan or more generous coverage for a low price. According to Federal data, increased subsides mean individuals will save on average $50 per month and families $85 per month on premiums. Many Mainers can find a plan for less than $10 per month. Mainers who received enhanced unemployment benefits at any time in 2021 are also eligible for additional financial assistance to lower both premiums and out-of-pocket costs.
More than 3 million uninsured people are estimated to be newly eligible for these health care coverage savings. In Maine, this includes 16,300 uninsured residents who are newly eligible for tax credits and 2,400 uninsured residents newly eligible for silver plans with a monthly premium of less than $10.
Maine people who aren’t sure what coverage they qualify for can visit CoverME.gov or call Consumers for Affordable Health Care at 1-800-965-7476 to learn more about affordable options through both MaineCare and HealthCare.gov. Eligible Maine people may enroll in MaineCare at any time of year.