Open House Saturday to Answer Health Benefits Questions

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RENO, NV - The non-profit Access to Healthcare is hosting an open house event, sponsored by Saint Mary’s Health Plans, giving locals the opportunity to sign up for health insurance before the health exchange door closes.

Locals are invited to bring questions about health insurance and learn more about the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA). Attendees will also be able to sign up for health insurance on-site.

The open house, scheduled for Saturday, March 22 from 10AM to 5PM, will be held at the Access to Healthcare office, 3640 Warren Way, Reno. Attendees will learn about subsidies, the benefits of new ACA laws, health insurance options and deadlines. Open enrollment through the state and federal health exchange portals continues through March 31, 2014 (though a 60-day extension for people having problems with the program has been approved), before penalties are incurred.

In 2014, non-enrollees will be subject to a penalty of 1 percent of their annual income or $95 per individual with a max of $285 per family. In 2015, the penalty increases to the greater of 2 percent of annual income or $325 per person.

“We’re hearing from people that they’re healthy and are willing to roll the dice and not buy health insurance, but the reality is that things happen beyond our control and those things can be very expensive,” said Niki King, Access to Healthcare executive vice president of member experience. “And with the ACA, insurance premiums can be as low as $40 a month. It’s not worth the risk.”

Sample healthcare expenses:
Average ER visit – $2,100
Appendicitis – Starts at $10,000
Broken leg, needs surgery – $16,000
Breast cancer – You’re looking at more than $128,000

“We’ll have eight no-fee, licensed brokers on hand at the open house to answer questions and begin the enrollment process,” said King. “We’re also looking at this as an opportunity to answer questions about the new health insurance laws and provide our community with some clarity on this often confusing topic.”

More information about Access to Healthcare is available at or by calling 877.385.2345.