Clock is ticking for 2019 Health Insurance Marketplace coverage
The clock is ticking to sign up for 2019 coverage in the Federal Health Insurance Marketplace. With a shorter enrollment period than in years past, enrollment is available through Dec. 15 for 2019 coverage.
Coastal Health & Wellness (CHW) is here to help and offers free open enrollment application assistance. Depending on an applicant’s income, they may qualify for assistance paying monthly health care premiums. Applicants may also qualify for exemptions from paying a penalty on tax returns.
“Those who don’t enroll in the Health Insurance Marketplace may face a tax penalty, which will increase each year,” said Michelle Peacock, patient care nurse case manager. “It sounds confusing and it can be confusing. That’s why we’re here. Coastal Health & Wellness staff can help you figure out what all this means for you and your family.”
All Health Insurance Marketplace plans cover essential health benefits, pre-existing conditions and preventative services. That includes maternity care, mammograms and other preventative care services. Applicants cannot be denied health coverage for having pre-existing conditions such as diabetes, hypertension and cancer.
Depending on income, applicants may also qualify for an insurance plan with tax credits or for Medicaid/ Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP). Plans sold during open enrollment start Jan. 1, 2019. There is no open enrollment for individuals to apply for Medicaid, CHIP or the Texas Women’s Health Program.
“The time frame to enroll for coverage is short so don’t let this pass you by. Remember you must enroll by Dec. 15,” Peacock said. “We have certified application counselors at Coastal Health & Wellness to help you along the way if you have questions.”
Galveston County residents with questions about the Health Insurance Marketplace can call CHW at 409-978-4225 or visit the clinic at 9850-C Emmett F. Lowry Expressway in Texas City.