Beginning November 1, open enrollment began for those wanting to purchase insurance coverage for 2018 via the Affordable Care Act's (ACA) health insurance marketplace. This open enrollment period runs through December 15, with insurance coverage beginning January 1. The ACA health insurance exchanges are intended for citizens who aren't eligible for health insurance benefits from their employer and who aren't enrolled in another kind of insurance program, such as Medicare or Medicaid. Despite the ongoing debate around repealing and/or revamping the ACA, it currently is still the law. While health insurance companies offering plans via the marketplace are no longer getting reimbursed for their discounts by the federal government, they continue the same benefits and coverage that they have since the marketplace first opened in 2013.
Applying for coverage via the ACA market place can be a bit daunting, especially for those signing up for the first time. However, the reference staff at MCPL is here to help! We can answer questions and assist residents in signing up for coverage via the marketplace website online at HealthCare.gov. If you don't have a computer, folks can apply online using computers at any MCPL location, or you can apply over the phone by calling 1-800-318-2596.
People already enrolled in coverage via the ACA can renew, alter, or update their coverage for 2018 here. If you do not currently carry health insurance, it is important that you do so by purchasing a plan via the health insurance marketplace. The ACA requires most U.S. residents to obtain some form of health coverage or face a monetary penalty the next time they file their income taxes. If you are uninsured for two months or less, however, no penalty will be given.
Aside from getting help via the reference staff at MCPL, the public can also visit our page of health care-related online resources, call the United Way's 211 help line, call 1-800-318-2596 (open 24 hrs. a day, 7 days a week), or visit www.coveringwi.org.
For more information, please call the MCPL Reference Desk at 715-261-7230.
image credit: Provided by government for library publicity.