How to sign up for Health Insurance Using a Health Insurance Exchange
Here is an easy to read list to find out whether you need to do anything regarding Health Insurance Exchanges:
- Do you already have health insurance through your employer? If you have a job-based health insurance that you like, you can keep it. You're considered covered. You may be able to change to Exchange coverage if you want to.
- Are you on Medicare? Under the ACA, your existing Medicare-covered benefits will not be reduced or taken away. You also will continue to be able to choose your own doctor.
- Are you on Medicaid? The Affordable Care Act fills gaps in coverage for the poorest Americans by creating a minimum Medicaid income eligibility level across the country.
- Do you receive VA health benefits? Veterans who receive healthcare coverage through the VA do not have to buy any extra coverage to satisfy the January 1, 2014 requirement that they have health insurance. They can, however, sign up for coverage on a state exchange to supplement their VA coverage.
- Are you self-employed? Learn what your options are from the official U.S. government website.
- Are you a small business owner? Learn what the Affordable Care Act means to you and your business.
- Are you a citizen? Only U.S. citizens and legal immigrants will be eligible to purchase a health plan in one of the exchanges.
Whether or not you already have health insurance, the first step is to find out if your State has a health insurance exchange
If you already have an individual insurance plan and want to change it, you can use the Marketplace to read about your options and enroll in a new health insurance exchange plan.
Where to sign up for a Health Insurance Exchange - State Exchange or Federal Exchange?
Some states will have insurance exchanges where consumers can find guaranteed access to health insurance. The State health insurance exchanges are the most important feature of the new Affordable Care Act, enacted to help uninsured people get health insurance coverage.
Some states have decided NOT to set up their OWN insurance exchanges, so in those cases, the Federal Government is doing it for them. There are two other groups setting up exchanges; one is a partnership with the federal government and the other is building their own insurance exchange.
Overall, the biggest problem is that most Americans do not fully understand the Affordable Care Act at all. Insurance is confusing enough, and insurance exchanges through the Affordable Care Act just make everything even more murky.
Since most of the exchanges will require signing up online, it is important that consumers realize their options and try to determine which plans are best for them. It is very important that consumers compare their plans based on the monthly premium, doctors' office co-payments, prescriptions and ensuring that your regular doctor is included in the health insurer's network.
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