Hurry! Healthcare.gov Sign Up Deadline is Dec. 15!
Community Groups Are Helping Texans Sign Up
AUSTIN - Texans have until Saturday, December 15th to sign up for 2019 health insurance through healthcare.gov. Community organizations have experts available through the remaining days of the open enrollment period to help Texans understand their options and sign up for insurance through the Affordable Care Act (ACA). This is the only chance to sign up for health insurance for 2019 through healthcare.gov unless you experience a “qualifying life event” during 2019, such as getting married or losing your health insurance. In many cases, if Texans miss the deadline and face an illness, injury, or pregnancy during 2019 while they are uninsured, they will not be able to enroll in coverage until 2020.
The vast majority of Texans who sign up for insurance through healthcare.gov are expected to receive significant financial assistance to reduce the costs of insurance. The financial assistance is only available for health plans on healthcare.gov. As in past years, financial help is available to assist with monthly premiums and to lower the amount people pay for deductibles and copayments. For 2018 insurance, 85 percent of Texans who signed up on healthcare.gov received financial assistance to bring down the cost of their health plans. Additionally, some insurance plans offered through healthcare.gov have lower monthly premiums than last year.
Health care experts have warned consumers to beware of new “junk” insurance policies that cover very few services. Those plans, which can now cover a year-long term and are being heavily marketed this year, are not permitted on healthcare.gov.
You can make an appointment for in-person assistance at your nearest enrollment location by going to the Get Covered Connector at widget.getcoveredamerica.org/connector. The following resources are also available to help Texans connect with local organizations that provide enrollment assistance:
Austin: Call 2-1-1 or insurecentraltexas.org
Central Texas outside Austin: Visit clearpathtocoverage.org
Dallas: Call 2-1-1 or visit bit.ly/DallasHealth18
El Paso: Visit unitedwayelpaso.org/enroll-el-paso
Gulf Coast/Houston: Visit enrollgulfcoast.com
Rio Grande Valley: Call (956) 246-4125
San Antonio: Call 2-1-1 or visit enrollsa.com
Texans living outside of the areas listed above should contact their local community health centers for in-person assistance. Texans can use MyTexasMyHealth.org to search for their local community health center. Because the federal government made deep cuts in funding for health insurance Navigator programs in Texas, organizations that previously provided in-person enrollment assistance in many communities are unable to do so this year.
Cover Texas Now is a coalition of consumer and faith-based Texas organizations. For more information, visit covertexasnow.org.