Got Questions on Private Health Insurance? Get the New and Improved Navigator Resource Guide

It’s been a bumpy road for the Affordable Care Act these last few months, but starting November 1, the marketplace is open for enrollment. As the fifth open enrollment season is upon us, we at CHIR have launched our updated and improved Navigator Resource Guide, made possible thanks to a grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

So What’s Changed?

In addition to a sleek new makeover, there are some new sections and functions in the updated Navigator Resource Guide:

What’s the Same?

Although the Navigator Resource Guide looks different, it still contains important updated information to help marketplace navigators and others assisting consumers:

  • Over 300 frequently asked questions (FAQs) on topics such as eligibility for marketplace coverage, premium tax credits, reduced cost-sharing plans, and the individual mandate, as well as topics focused on small and large employer-sponsored coverage.
  • Thresholds for 2018 related to financial assistance eligibility, exemptions, and a table of federal poverty levels.
  • An easy-to-use search function to find FAQs and background information.

Similar to previous years, we will be continuing to update the Guide as needed to ensure consumers and assisters have the most up-to-date information.


  • Tracy Zackson says:

    Is it possible to purchase a private, commercial health insurance plan, that is not a Market Place plan? Do they exist any more?

    • In most states, yes. You can contact an insurance company directly, or use an insurance broker to assist you to buy a health plan outside the marketplace. This year, if you’re not eligible for income-based premium subsidies, buying off-marketplace might be the most affordable option. However, it is “buyer beware,” when buying outside the marketplace. Make sure you read the fine print and confirm that the plan qualifies as “minimum essential coverage” for purposes of the individual mandate, provides adequate financial protection in the case of an unexpected medical event, and includes a network of doctors and hospitals that can meet your needs. Good luck!

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