To Market, to Market: The Health Insurance Marketplace and You

As of the date of this post, there are 75 days until open enrollment begins on the Health Insurance Marketplace.

With the implementation of the ACA, the Health Insurance Marketplace will be your destination for figuring out how to get the best health care coverage you can within your budget.

Under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), Americans are assured access to health coverage, whether through insurance provided by your (or your spouse’s) employer, a government-administered program, or an exchange (the marketplace).

A Personalized Shopping Cart

The Health Insurance Marketplace provides personalized information about your options for health coverage and provides the mechanism to enroll. You’ll learn whether you can reduce the costs of your monthly premiums from your current coverage through private insurance plans and if you can lower your out-of-pocket costs.

You’ll also learn if you are eligible for free or reduced-cost coverage through Medicaid or the Children’s Health Insurance Program. The American Public Health Association provides useful information about the expansion of Medicaid (health insurance for low-income individuals and families), a critical (and strongly contested) provision of the ACA.

Of course, no undertaking so large can be simple enough that we could summarize it here. Rather, your range of options depends on your personal situation (including your family unit size, your employment situation, and your income) and your state of residence.

Your Path to Insurance Coverage

For a flow chart of which route to take for health care coverage, check out this nifty graphic provided by the Kaiser Family Foundation and the Journal of the American Medical Association.

The federal government website for the Health Insurance Marketplace is your destination for learning more about the changes you can expect and what’s happening with health insurance as the ACA is implemented. You’ll be able to learn about the law and more from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

The Kaiser Family Foundation is tracking each state’s progress in setting up the marketplaces, so visit their site for information and a link to the relevant informational site for your state.

Is there enough information in your state to help you make choices? Where are you getting the information?

What challenges are you facing about finding health coverage?

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