eHealth Provides Additional Consumer Resources as Open Enrollment Continues
MOUNTAIN VIEW, CA, October 10, 2013 – After the first week of the new open enrollment period, eHealth, Inc. (NASDAQ: EHTH), parent company of eHealthInsurance.com, the nation's leading private online health insurance exchange for individual and family health insurance, announced additional resources to help consumers navigate new health plan options under the Affordable Care Act (ACA). These include new educational resources to help consumers better understand their options before shopping and enrolling in health insurance, as well as enrollment tips for consumers not eligible for subsidies associated with the ACA.
The first-ever open enrollment period for individual and family health insurance plans under the ACA began October 1, 2013 and will last through March 31, 2014. To provide consumers additional assistance to navigate the new open enrollment period, eHealth is providing enrollment resources and tools. These include:
Education resources: eHealth has created a workbook for consumers called “5 Steps to Understanding Obamacare” which is now available in eHealth’s ACA Resource Center. The workbook provides information on the different types of new health plans, how consumers will pay for health insurance, where they’ll purchase plans, including exchanges, and key tips for open enrollment.
Infographics: eHealth has released three separate infographics, available in eHealth’s ACA Resource Center, designed to help consumers understand their options under the Affordable Care Act. The infographics include the following:
- A simple visual explanation of how to determine one’s eligibility for subsidies
- A description of the different types of health plans available during open enrollment, including plans with “pre-reform” benefits that are available for people who need coverage in 2013
- For those who apply for coverage that begins in 2013, a list of states where most insurers will allow them to keep 2013 plans through most of 2014
Health plan options and tips: eHealth continues to introduce new ACA-compliant major medical plans in select states for January 1, 2014 effective date enrollment on eHealthInsurance.com. These plans include the essential health benefits required by the ACA and are available for consumers not utilizing subsidies. eHealth is currently offering 1,150 non-subsidy-eligible ACA-compliant plans available from approximately 60 carriers. Some of these carriers have plans in multiple states. eHealth expects to continue to roll out new plans from carriers on a regular basis.
For consumers comparing and enrolling in non-subsidy-eligible, ACA-compliant 2014 plans, eHealth is providing the following tips:
- Understand all of your plan options – National online marketplaces like eHealth may offer a range of non-exchange plans that meet your coverage requirements under the Affordable Care Act. If you are looking for a particular brand-name insurer in your state, note that some companies may opt to sell plans only outside of your state exchange.
- Know that you’ll get the same basic benefits packages – All major medical health insurance plans sold in 2014 will need to provide the same “essential health benefits,” whether purchased through a state exchange or off-exchange.
- Take the time to research – With new plan options and benefits available, consumers should take the time to review and understand the details and out-of-pocket costs associated with the different plan options. Consumers have until December 15, 2013 to enroll in plan with coverage beginning on January 1, 2014. Otherwise, the open enrollment lasts through March 31, 2014.
- Pay attention to open enrollment dates – If you wish to enroll in a health reform-compliant plan, even if you don’t qualify for a subsidy or enroll through a government exchange, you will still need to enroll during the current open enrollment period. Starting in 2014, if you don’t enroll in an ACA-compliant plan, you may be subject to a tax penalty. Outside of open enrollment, your ability to apply for health insurance may vary from state to state. It may be limited to the occurrence of a “qualifying event” such as the loss of a job, a marriage or divorce, a move, or the birth of a child.
- Get personal advice on plan choice – In addition to helping you understand how different health insurance plans may vary from one another, and helping you enroll, licensed agents can also make specific plan recommendations based on your personal needs and budget. eHealth’s customer care centers are staffed with licensed professionals available by phone from 8:00am – 12:00am ET and by email or chat 24/7.
To learn more about open enrollment and the Affordable Care Act, visit eHealth’s new ACA Resource Center at www.ehealthinsurance.com/affordable-care-act.
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eHealth, Inc. (NASDAQ: EHTH) is the parent company of eHealthInsurance, the nation's first and largest private health insurance exchange where individuals, families and small businesses can compare health insurance products from leading insurers side by side and purchase and enroll in coverage online. eHealthInsurance offers thousands of individual, family and small business health plans underwritten by more than 200 of the nation's leading health insurance companies. eHealthInsurance is licensed to sell health insurance in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. eHealth, Inc. also provides powerful online and pharmacy-based tools to help seniors navigate Medicare health insurance options, choose the right plan and enroll in select plans online through its wholly-owned subsidiary, PlanPrescriber.com (www.planprescriber.com) and through its Medicare website www.eHealthMedicare.com.
For more health insurance news and information, visit the eHealth consumer blog: Get Smart – Get Covered.
This press release contains forward-looking statements, including statements regarding the availability of ACA-compliant health insurance plans and the timing of such availability; the timing and duration of the open enrollment period; the deadlines to enroll for coverage with a January 1, 2014 effective date; continued introduction of ACA-compliant major medical plans; online marketplaces offering a range of non-exchange plans; carriers only offering plans off of the state exchange; and requirements for plans sold in 2014. These forward-looking statements involve certain risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those indicated in such forward-looking statements, including, but not limited to, eHealth’s ability to maintain its relationships with insurance carriers; insurance carriers gaining approval to market health plans and providing eHealth permission to display them on eHealth’s website; eHealth’s ability to obtain health plan information from eHealth’s health insurance carrier partners and incorporate it into its web platform; political opposition to the implementation and funding of the Affordable Care Act and eHealth’s ability to timely meet the applicable requirements and potential changes in laws, regulations and regulatory guidance. Other risks and uncertainties that can affect actual results are included under the captions “Risk Factors” and “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations” in eHealth’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2012 and most recent Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q, which are on file with the SEC and are available on the investor relations page of eHealth’s website at http://www.ehealthinsurance.com and on the Securities and Exchange Commission’s website at www.sec.gov. All information provided in this press release is as of the date of this press release, and we undertake no duty to update this information unless required by law. In addition, the discussion of aspects of the Affordable Care Act and related regulations are merely summaries, are not complete and are qualified by reference to the Affordable Care Act.