The individual marketplace created by the Affordable Care Act, ACA, opened Wednesday. Although there have been some changes to the federal program, Hoosiers who need health insurance, will have options.
Indiana residents can find comprehensive health insurance that is protected by provisions through the ACA and covers pre-existing conditions, maternity care and mental health.
This will be the first open enrollment after federal moves got rid of the individual mandate fee for not having insurance. In recent years, the Trump administration has also cut back the enrollment period and people hired to help enrollees.
Mark Fairchild, Covering Kids and Families of Indiana policy director, says Hoosiers will still have access to help.
"Some federal funding went away but in the state we’ve actually had an expansion in the amount of navigators that we have available for a lot of consumers," says Fairchild.
Covering Kids and Families of Indiana will offer support in all 92 counties. Other organizations also offer navigator help, including the Indiana Department of Insurance, hospitals and community health centers.
This will be the first open enrollment the individual mandate penalizing people without insurance was ended. Fairchild says that got rid of the fee for not being covered.
“Of course, we do like to emphasis there is the large penalty of not having health coverage,” says Fairchild.
The Trump administration is also now promoting short-term plans that cost less and cover less.
Fairchild says he’s concerned people don’t have enough information.
"The biggest problem we’re seeing is really these robo-calls there’s no way of discerning how many of them are legitimate by the standards of short term plans," says Fairchild.
Plan prices have somewhat stabilized on the marketplace but enrollees can expect an increase of about 5 percent.
The period runs through Dec. 15.