One month remains until the March 31 deadline for enrolling in the Missouri Health Insurance Marketplace. Do you know your options?
So far, more than 54,000 Missourians have chosen health plans through the marketplace, but thousands more have yet to purchase insurance. To help educate and enroll, Mercy Hospital Lebanon has expanded hours and enrollment sessions. The health system also wants to help dispel myths, particularly about high insurance costs, that may be deterring some people from signing up for coverage before the 2014 enrollment period ends.
Counselors at Mercy Hospital Lebanon, a grantee of the Missouri Foundation for Health, say many people are pleasantly surprised to find they qualify for financial help that makes their coverage costs affordable for them.
In fact, a majority of Missourians – 83 percent, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) – who have signed up for Marketplace plans have received financial assistance. Yet despite this high number, a recent Enroll America Survey indicated that nationally, more than two-thirds of uninsured Americans are not aware of potential savings and thus, have not visited the online Marketplace.
Misconceptions like this only further underscore continued information gaps that Mercy Hospital Lebanon (100 Hospital Drive in Lebanon, Mo.) hopes to address in March through extended hours:
“Mercy’s activities give uninsured Missourians an important opportunity to get accurate information about Marketplace health plans before the enrollment period ends,” said Ryan Barker, Vice President of Health Policy at Missouri Foundation for Health, which launched Cover Missouri last August. “We encourage everyone statewide to take full advantage of free assistance and information sessions this month — and an active role in meeting their health care needs.”
For more information about extended hours and attending these sessions, call Joy Weis at (417) 533-6184. Appointments for other days can also be made by contacting this number.
Mercy’s activities support the Cover Missouri Coalition’s broader efforts to reduce the state’s uninsured rate to less than five percent in five years. Click here for more information on Mercy's ACA outreach.