According to a national survey of uninsured adults, 81 percent of uninsured Americans do not know about the March 31 enrollment deadline, which is the last day to sign up through the Marketplace to avoid potential tax penalties. Seventy percent have not visited the Marketplace website and 69 percent do not know tax subsidies or financial help is available. Yet 82 percent of respondents would be likely to sign up for a plan if they found quality health insurance they could afford.
Clearly, there is a need for education surrounding health care reform. In response, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan is offering a series of education sessions to help consumers navigate through the new Marketplace.
The sessions will outline the basics of the Affordable Care Act, including tax credits, cost sharing, and enrollment. Blue Cross representatives will also share information about the new “essential benefits,” which include things like hospitalization; maternity and newborn care; mental health and substance use disorder services and chronic disease management for illnesses like diabetes.
Materials and resources will be provided to enable attendees to understand their new insurance coverage options. There will be a Q&A session at the end of the presentation, along with an opportunity to speak with a certified, licensed agent to enroll in a Blue Cross health plan. The education sessions are open to the entire community, and there is no charge to attend. Sessions will be added throughout the open enrollment period, which ends March 31, with the following sessions will be offered. For more information on any of these sessions, call 313-225-8755. To learn more about your 2014 health plan options, visit Bcbsm.com/getinsurance.
- Metropolitan Head Start Center (13400 Schaefer, Detroit): Jan. 16, 1- 2:30 p.m.
- Tower Head Start Center (15400 Grand River, Detroit): Jan. 21, 1 – 2:30 p.m.
- Wyandotte Clinic for the Working Uninsured (3333 Biddle Ave, Ste. A, Wyandotte): Jan. 25, 10 a.m. – 12 p.m.
- Rochester Hills Public Library (500 Olde Towne Rd, Rochester Hills): Feb. 4, 7 – 8:30 p.m.
- Redford Public Library (25320 Six Mile Rd, Redford): Feb. 19, 6:30 – 8 p.m.
Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, the only carrier offering plans in all 83 Michigan counties, is partnering with various community organizations, including Head Start, Wyandotte Clinic for the Working Uninsured, and public libraries to host these enrollment sessions. These sessions are for individuals who are interested in a Blues plan but need guidance selecting and enrolling in the right plan for their unique situation. All sessions are free and open to the public who are not Medicare eligible. For more information regarding health care reform, visit healthcarereformbasics.com. Photo Credit: Jared Rodriguez