Coping Without COBRA Webinar – As 15 Months of COBRA Subsidies End, May 25th Webinar Outlines Alternatives to COBRA Resulting from Health Reform
May 19, 2010 | Consumer Advice
MOUNTAIN VIEW, CA – (May 19, 2010) –Today eHealthInsurance (NASDAQ: EHTH) along with the Foundation for Health Coverage Education and The Healthcare Blue Book announced plans to host a free webinar on May 25th, 2010 at 1pm Eastern, 10 am Pacific for consumers who may be nearing the end of their 15 months of subsidized COBRA health insurance premiums.
Consumers are encouraged to sign-up for the free, one-hour, Coping Without COBRA webinar at: https://ehealthinsurance.webex.com/ehealthinsurance/onstage/g.php?t=a&d=663183483
What is the COBRA Subsidy?
In 2009, an estimated 7 million Americans (and their dependants) were expected to use the COBRA subsidy according to the Congressional Budget Office1. The COBRA subsidy was part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (the stimulus bill), which was signed into law in February 2009. The program reduced the amount of money individuals had to pay for their COBRA health insurance premiums by 65% for 15 months. Consumers who began receiving COBRA Subsidies in March 2009 will reach the end of their 15-months of subsidized COBRA Health Insurance premiums in June, 2010.
Who will be impacted by the end of the subsidy?
The largest single group of people set to collectively roll-off of the COBRA subsidy could be the group that loses their subsidies in June, 2010, because anyone currently receiving the subsidy that qualified for it between September 2008 and March 2009 – a six month period when unemployment increased from 6.2% to 8.4%2 – will have reached the end of their 15 subsidized months at that time.
Are there Alternatives to COBRA?
People scheduled to lose their COBRA subsidies will have to make some choices and explore their options for finding health coverage, including paying full price for COBRA. Health Reform Legislation provides additional options for consumers who cannot afford to continue their COBRA coverage without the 65% federal subsidy.
What will people learn at the Webinar?
The Webinar will feature three speakers who will cover the following topics:
- Ankeny Minoux, President of the Foundation for Health Coverage Education. Ankeny will review new and existing public health insurance programs that may serve as an alternative to COBRA.
- Carrie McLean, Consumer Health Insurance Expert for eHealthInsurance Services, Inc. Carrie will review new and existing private health insurance programs that may serve as an alternative to COBRA.
- Bill Kampine, SVP for The Healthcare Blue Book. Bill will review steps to help people determine fair prices in their area for healthcare services. People who pay for their own healthcare, have high deductibles or need services their insurance does not fully cover, can get help from the Healthcare Blue Book.
- Attend the free webinar hosted by eHealthInsurance, The Foundation For Health Coverage Education and Health Care Blue Book on May 25th at 10AM pacific time: Register today at: https://ehealthinsurance.webex.com/ehealthinsurance/onstage/g.php?t=a&d=663183483
- If you've never purchased your own health insurance before, get help by contacting an agent or broker or by using free online resources like eHealthInsurance's "Health Insurance Buyer's Guide"
- Calculate the amount of time you have remaining on the COBRA subsidy using eHealthInsurance's COBRA Subsidy Calendar widget
- Test your understanding of key health insurance terms and benefits with eHealthInsurance's health insurance quiz
- If you have a pre-existing medical condition, talk to a licensed agent or contact the Foundation for Health Coverage Education at http://www.CoverageForAll.org to learn about free or low-cost health care options are available in your area
- Get help finding the best price for medical services, whether you have health insurance or not, by using the Health Care Blue Book at http://www.HealthCareBlueBook.com)
1 See eHealth press release from February 8, 2010: http://news.ehealthinsurance.com/pr/ehi/forgotten-health-insurance-consumers-153592.aspx
2Based on monthly unemployment numbers reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics for September 2008 through March 2009 (http://www.bls.gov).
eHealth, Inc. (NASDAQ: EHTH) is the parent company of eHealthInsurance, the nation's leading online source of health insurance for individuals, families and small businesses. Information and resources are available on various health plans, ranging from individual and family, short-term medical, and Medicare insurance. Consumers can get quotes from leading health insurance carriers, compare plans side by side, and apply for and purchase health insurance. eHealthInsurance is an online marketplace licensed to sell health insurance in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. eHealthInsurance and eHealth are registered trademarks of eHealthInsurance Services, Inc. For more information, see www.ehealthinsurance.com.