Looking for ACA Health Insurance for 2019? Here’s What to Expect

It’s time for consumers who buy their own health insurance to start shopping for policies for next year. Open enrollment for Affordable Care Act coverage started Nov. 1 across most of the country.

But the shopping and buying experience will vary widely, depending on where people live.

In California, for example, where political leaders have always been supportive of the Affordable Care Act, legislators have allocated $100 million for outreach… Read More at NPR.org

Obamacare Early Enrollment Rate Drops in First Sign-up Season Since GOP Changes

Obamacare sign-ups on the federal health insurance marketplace fell by 20.4 percent in the first two weeks of this enrollment season compared to last year, according to new federal data.

The tally is being closely watched because fiscal 2019 will be the first year since 2013 in which Americans will not be penalized for failing to have some form of health insurance coverage… Read More at CNBC.com

How to Sign Up For Health Insurance Under the Affordable Care Act During the 2018 – 2019 Open Enrollment Season

Sign up for “TrumpCare” between November 1 and December 15, 2018 to get health coverage and cost assistance for 2019. Get covered at Healthcare.gov.

Key Dates For Open Enrollment 2019

To sign up for TrumpCare you must choose whether you want short-term coverage or comprehensive coverage that qualifies for cost assistance based on income.

There is no enrollment period for short term, however comprehensive coverage that qualifies for cost assistance based on income must be purchased during open enrollment.

Below are key enrollment dates about open enrollment 2019 (the enrollment period for 2019 coverage).

  • November 1, 2018. Open Enrollment begins.
  • December 15, 2018: Open Enrollment ends (extensions may be granted).
  • January 1, 2019: The earliest a plan purchased during open enrollment can start.

TIP: In most states there is no fee for not having health coverage, however in a few states there is. Make sure you understand your state rules before going without health coverage in 2019. See states with an individual mandate and fee… Read More at Obamacarefacts.com.

Trump Administration Widens Obamacare Escape Hatch for Red States

The Trump administration said Monday it will give states significant new ability to opt out of Obamacare requirements, a move that could boost cheaper health plans with fewer protections for pre-existing conditions.

Many health insurance experts warn the move could essentially create two health insurance markets — one for healthy people who opt for the cheaper plans and another for sicker patients who will face spiraling costs… Read More at Politico

Health Industry Experts Fear ‘Chaos’ if Texas Judge Suspends Affordable Care Act

A federal judge in Texas is weighing a request by 20 states to suspend the Affordable Care Act (ACA), a move that could lead to “chaos” in the health insurance market, some industry experts worry.

The states filed a lawsuit in February to have the health care act — also called Obamacare — declared unconstitutional. In arguments held last Wednesday, lawyers for the Republican-led states did not back off on their request for a preliminary injunction suspending the entire law… Read More at USA Today

Modest Premium Hikes as Obamacare Stabilizes

Millions of people covered under the Affordable Care Act will see only modest premium increases next year, and some will get price cuts. That’s the conclusion from an exclusive analysis of the besieged but resilient program, which still sparks deep divisions heading into this year’s midterm elections.

The Associated Press and the consulting firm Avalere Health crunched available state data and found that “Obamacare’s” health insurance marketplaces seem to be stabilizing after two years of sharp premium hikes. And the exodus of insurers from the program has halted, even reversed somewhat, with more consumer choices for 2019.

The analysis found a 3.6 percent average increase in proposed or approved premiums across 47 states and Washington, D.C., for next year. This year the average increase nationally was about 30 percent. The average total premium for an individual covered under the health law is now close to $600 a month before subsidies… Read More at ABC News

A First: Obamacare Premiums to Decline in Georgia

The Obamacare rates for next year are in, and it’s a first: Rates are going down.

Following years of steep price hikes, two of the four companies that offer plans on the Affordable Care Act exchange in Georgia, also known as Obamacare, have proposed to lower their rates next year from what they charged in 2018.

According to figures for the individual insurance market released Thursday by the state Department of Insurance, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Georgia is proposing a tiny decrease in premiums for next year, with 2019 premium prices that are on average 0.3 percent lower than 2018’s premiums. Alliant Health Plans is decreasing its premiums by 10 percent… Read More at AJC.com

Media Ignore Record Low ObamaCare Rate Hikes — Anyone Want to Guess Why?

Democrats promised to make President Trump’s efforts to “sabotage” ObamaCare a big election issue this year. Then rate hikes for ObamaCare premiums started coming in well below expectations. Why isn’t this big news?

A few months ago, the Washington Post reported that Democrats were “centering their campaign to retake Congress … on a staunch defense of the Affordable Care Act.”

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer declared that “We Democrats are going to be relentless in making sure the American people exactly understand who is to blame” for-sky high rate hikes… Read More at Investors.com

Trump Administration Makes It Easier to Buy Alternative to Obamacare

The Trump administration took another whack at the Affordable Care Act on Wednesday.

Officials unveiled a final rule that will make it easier to obtain coverage through short-term health insurance plans, which don’t have to adhere to the law’s consumer protections.

The move would reverse an Obama administration decision to limit the duration of short-term plans to no more than 90 days in order to make them less attractive. Insurers will soon be allowed to sell these policies for just under a year. They can be renewed for up to 36 months, though that renewal isn’t guaranteed.

Administration officials say the short-term plans will provide a cheaper health insurance alternative for those who can’t afford to buy coverage on the Obamacare exchanges.

“We fully recognize that these products are not necessarily for everyone, but we do think they will provide an affordable option to many, many people who’ve been priced out of the current market under the Obamacare regulations,” said Randy Pate, a deputy administrator at the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.

But patient advocates and health policy experts argue that these policies provide only skimpy coverage and will undermine the Affordable Care Act… Read More at CNN.

Trump Budget Trifecta: Plan Aims to Gut Obamacare, Roll Back Medicaid Expansion, Cut Medicare

  • President Donald Trump’s new budget proposal calls for another effort to repeal Obamacare.
  • Trump’s budget uses a failed Republican bill known as Graham-Cassidy as a template.
  • The proposal also seeks a rollback of the expansion of Medicaid benefits achieved under the Affordable Care Act.

 

Read more at CNBC