Starting next January 1st, Americans are required to have health insurance under the Affordable Care Act, or ObamaCare. On October 1st, those who don't already have health insurance will have a new way to shop for it on something called the exchanges, or health insurance marketplace.
For hundreds of thousands of Wisconsinites--maybe even you--October 1st is a big day. Generating big questions.
"I think the number one question is going to be, “What's it going to cost?” “What's the coverage going to be?"
"Am I eligible? What does this mean? How much am I going to have to pay?"
There's also questions about what exactly is an exchange.
October 1st is the first day hundreds of thousands currently without Health insurance in Wisconsin and others losing coverage, can start shopping at www.healthcare.gov, and start signing up for health insurance coverage with private insurance companies.
According to stats from Group Health Cooperative (GHC), at least 640,000 uninsured or soon- to- be uninsured people in our state will be in the market for health insurance--- including about 125,000 that will have to transition off of their Medicaid coverage.
Starting October 1st, the uninsured, small business owners, or any of us, will be able to shop around and see what coverage 13 private insurance companies here in Wisconsin will have to offer starting January 1. You'll find out what plans will cost, and if you can get some help from the government paying for the coverage being sold there. There will also be information about the fine for not getting coverage.
There are a lot of people who don't have access to insurance through their employer, and as a result, have never even had the opportunity to shop for insurance.
At Wisconsin Office of the Commissioner of Insurance "Q and A” sessions across the state, there are a lot of people that don't even know how this law is going to impact them.
Fact is, the Marketplace doesn't impact you, if you're a senior on Medicare. You're all set. Nothing happening October 1st changes your coverage.
If you're someone who has health insurance, you can still shop around on the Marketplace to see if the benefits companies must offer have better coverage. And you might want to see f you're eligible for tax subsidies if you buy on the Marketplace.
If you're happy with the health insurance you have through work, you don't have to do anything October 1st.