Deadline looms to sign up for health insurance through Health Link

Published: Jul. 19, 2021 at 5:00 PM PDT
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RENO, Nev. (KOLO) - In years past, Nevadans had roughly a three-month time period in the late fall to sign up for health insurance through Nevada’s health insurance exchange called Nevada Health Link.

COVID changed that, so during the spring of 2020, those needing health insurance in our state could sign up during a special enrollment period.

Then came the passage to the American Rescue Plan in March of 2021. What did it mean? Federal subsidies for most Nevadans needing health insurance, who before now might not be able to afford the premiums.

“On average, back in January our premiums, our average monthly premiums, people were paying on average $250 a month,” says Janel Davis, with Nevada Health Link. “And so now, because of the American Rescue Plan from April to July, those consumers are paying on hundred bucks,” she says.

Davis says in the past, Nevada Health Link talked about the affordability of health care plans on the exchange. Now with the federal subsidies, health insurance is even more affordable than ever. And the American Rescue Plan Act has included some extra provisions so even more people can qualify for insurance under the exchange.

“If you collected unemployment insurance, anytime, even it was just for one week, during 2021, you are eligible for a free insurance plan through Nevada Health Link,” says Davis.

Those Nevadans who signed up for health insurance through the exchange before the rescue plan was introduced can go back into the system and reapply and take advantage of subsidies as well. Davis says more than 11,000 Nevadans have enrolled in Nevada’s Health Insurance Exchange during the special enrollment either for the first time, or updated their plans to include the federal subsidies.

The opportunity to do so is still in effect until August 15 when this signup period ends.

Davis says before the rescue plan a little more than 80% of Nevadans qualified for subsidies, now that number is 94%.

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