As Healthcare.gov opens for enrollment on November 1st, most Virginians will see lower premiums and more choices on the Health Insurance Marketplace

Friday, November 1st, 2019

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

CONTACT:
Jill Hanken
[email protected]
(804) 351-5258

Richmond, Va, – Open enrollment for health insurance available on the Affordable Care Act (ACA) marketplaces begins on November 1st, and most Virginians will see more choices and lower premiums on the Health Insurance Marketplace at Healthcare.gov.

The number of insurers participating in the marketplace in Virginia is up this year, as is the number of health insurance plans people can choose from, increasing from an average of 13.6 plans in 2019 to 19.6 plans on average available for 2020. In the Richmond area, consumers will be able to choose from 28 different health plans in 2020 – compared to only nine plan options in 2019.

According to the Virginia Bureau of Insurance, the weighted average premium will be reduced by 18 percent. Medicaid expansion is cited as one of the key reasons for this reduction in premiums. (See 2020 Premium Rate Presentation to SCC, Slides 14 and 20, https://www.scc.virginia.gov/boi/co/acafilinginfo/files/ratepres2020.pdf.)

In Virginia, 75 percent of current marketplace consumers will have plans available for 2020 that cost less than $50 per month after tax credits. More than eight of ten marketplace enrollees in Virginia received premium tax credits to help them pay for their 2019 coverage. In addition, nearly half of all marketplace enrollees in Virginia also qualified for cost-sharing reductions this year, which lowered their deductibles, copays and other out-of-pocket costs for health care services.

“Even if you’re happy with your current plan, it’s still important to review all of your options for 2020 to make sure nothing has changed,” said Jill Hanken, Director of ENROLL! Virginia and Health Attorney at Virginia Poverty Law Center (VPLC). “Because plans and prices change year over year, it’s vital that consumers take the time to compare their plan options.”

This is a great time for consumers to examine the deals found on the marketplace to save money and better meet their health care needs. Consumers who went on HealthCare.gov, compared their plan options and selected the plan that best fit their health and financial needs ended up paying 38 percent less per month on average in 2019 than the consumers whose plans were automatically renewed.

Consumers have until December 15th to enroll.

The health insurance landscape can be confusing, but free, local in-person help is available. You can find someone to help you navigate the enrollment process by visiting enrollva.org. Enrollment assisters throughout the Commonwealth are available to help consumers during open enrollment season. They can provide education and enrollment assistance for all types of consumer needs and questions.

To learn more, please visit www.enrollva.org.

Enroll Virginia, a nonpartisan, community-based organization, has a statewide team of
professionally-certified navigators ready to assist consumers who need help applying for and enrolling in coverage, obtaining financial assistance and getting answers to questions about Marketplace, Medicaid and FAMIS coverage. Consumers may contact Enroll Virginia’s staff by calling toll-free 1-888-392-5132. Assistance is free and unbiased.

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