GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — There’s a special enrollment period for people looking for healthcare through the government’s marketplace that runs through August 15th.
If you collected unemployment you may be eligible for discounts.
“Many people have been negatively impacted by pandemic and they’re currently uninsured,” said Dr. LaShawn McIver with the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.
She tells FOX 17 anyone who’s collected unemployment this year is now eligible for extra help.
“So, we’re encouraging people who are in need of health insurance to go to healthcare.gov to see what healthcare options there are and what type of financial assistance they may qualify for,” she said.
Hundreds of thousands of people in Michigan collected unemployment benefits and FOX 17 has reported on the issue extensively.
As of July 1, those people can greatly benefit from expanded financial assistance. Some could qualify for co-pays as low as $0 as well as very low out of pocket expenses.
“Under the American Rescue Plan, financial assistance has been greatly expanded,” said Dr. McIver. “So, even if you already have a health insurance plan through healthcare.gov you should still go back and see if you qualify for this financial assistance.”
McIver says if you sign up by the end of the month, your health insurance would start by the first of the next month. If you get a job and your employer offers coverage, then you can cancel.
“Simply go online and update your information and the appropriate steps would be taken,” she said.
Even if you’re already on the marketplace it’s good to re-check what’s available. McIver told us 4 out of 5 people are finding plans for as low as $10 a month – and some are even cheaper.
“And for a family of four their premiums may have been $400 and they’re finding plans for as low as $163 or less,” she said.
The discounts are all made possible by the American Rescue Plan. The expanded financial assistance helps families affected by the pandemic.
“The American Rescue Plan provides this financial assistance to help individuals and families who are uninsured and in need of health insurance.”
If you need help you can call (800)-318-2596. Operators are standing by 24-hours a day and can provide assistance in 150 languages.