New Rules on Special Enrollment Periods: What Do They Mean for Consumers and the Assisters Who Help Them?

What triggers a special enrollment period to allow someone to enroll on the individual market outside of open enrollment has been a hot debated topic of late. Recently the administration issued a new rule tightening what life events trigger a special enrollment period. CHIR’s Sandy Ahn summarizes the new rule and what it means for consumers and the assisters that help them. Continue reading

Open Enrollment Begins, Kinks in the Cost Calculator Tool on Healthcare.gov and Other OE News

Open Enrollment 3 (OE3) is now underway and by all accounts, things are going smoothly. There are a few minor kinks with the out-of-pocket cost calculator, which officials have fixed or are working on fixing now. CHIR highlights two consumer facing tools that healthcare.gov is pilot testing and should be available to all users before the end of open enrollment. Continue reading

Updated Navigator Resource Guide

CHIR is pleased to release an updated online Navigator Guide on Private Health Insurance and Health Insurance Marketplaces with searchable frequently asked questions (FAQs) and easy-to-read background information on key health insurance and marketplace issues. With Open Enrollment just a few days away, get your Guide on! Continue reading

New Resource on Enrollment Now Available

As we draw nearer to the start of Open Enrollment 3, a new resource is available from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), the FFM and FF-SHOP Enrollment Manual. A complete guide of policy and operational information, the new Manual covers all topics related to eligibility and enrollment in the FFM and FF-SHOP. CHIR’s Sandy Ahn provides a quick summary of the new CMS resource. Continue reading

Balance Billing for Air Ambulance Remains a Problem in Maryland

Although Maryland is among the handful of states that regulate balance billing for out-of-network situations, as we discuss in a previous report, the state’s law does not address air ambulance charges. Balance billing for air ambulances remain a problem in Maryland and its insurance department held a public meeting last Friday to discuss the issue. CHIR’s Sandy Ahn provides highlights of the meeting and other state efforts to address this consumer problem. Continue reading

New Online Resource Provides Answers to Common Health Insurance and Marketplace Questions

This week, CHIR is releasing an online version of the Navigator Resource Guide, with close to 300 searchable FAQs and easy-to-read background information on key health insurance and marketplace issues. Although designed with the needs of Navigators in mind, the Guide is a hands-on, practical resource for anyone who needs to communicate with consumers about the Affordable Care Act. Continue reading

Georgetown Navigator Technical Assistance Project: Lessons Learned and Recommendations for Future Enrollment

Georgetown University experts from the Center on Health Insurance Reforms and the Center for Children and Families released this week a report documenting the experiences over the past year working with Navigators, Certified Application Counselors, and others working to enroll consumers in the health insurance marketplaces. JoAnn Volk, Sandy Ahn, Sabrina Corlette and Tricia Brooks share lessons learned and recommendations for future enrollments in a comprehensive report and two video clips. Continue reading

Taking Stock and Taking Steps to Improve Consumer Assistance

A new report released by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Kaiser Family Foundation chronicles the challenges, innovations and lessons learned about the needs of consumers for assistance in accessing and using health coverage options under the Affordable Care Act. Our partner in our Navigator technical assistance project, the Georgetown Center for Children and Families’ Tricia Brooks, has this overview. Continue reading