Healthcare.gov Open Enrollment Underway
The open enrollment period for those seeking health insurance on healthcare.gov (commonly known as Obamacare) began on Tuesday this week.
"This is enrollment for individual and small group plans," said Press Secretary for the Montana State Auditor’s Office Sanjay Talwani. "This only affects a small minority of people in the country and in Montana. There is about 8 percent of Montanans, still a significant number, who get their health insurance through those individual and small group marketplaces."
News of rising health insurance prices worries many of those covered by the affordable Care Act’s health insurance marketplace. Although most receive subsidies, there are still thousands of Montanans that must pay the rising prices.
"At least a couple of thousand of folks, I am not sure the exact number, I think the last time we checked it was in the 3,000 range of folks who are in the individual marketplace and will not qualify for those tax credits," Talwani said. "Those are the people in the worst situation. The most common group of that is folks who are actually making to much money to get the tax credit."
While shopping and comparing health insurance options is important for all Montanans, it is especially true for those without subsides, as prices on some Montana plans have jumped by over 50 percent.
For those with questions on navigating the healthcare market, the Montana Auditor's office has set up a website at healthcareanswers.com that includes a "talk to a human" feature with links to certified locals with expertise in health insurance.