Whether you receive health benefits from your job, the marketplace or an association, you have probably been hearing a lot of urgent messages about open enrollment. It is this time of year where individuals and businesses alike have to make important decisions about their health insurance coverage. It is also the only opportunity to make changes to your plans without a qualifying event. Below we offer some items to consider as you make your way through open enrollment for your 2018 health insurance coverage.
Individuals: With the Affordable Care Act in disarray, Indiana residents who were relying on the heath insurance marketplace for coverage are having to look for other options. Many have received notification from their 2017 insurer of a discontinuation of coverage. There is still one option for individual policies in Indiana’s health insurance exchange though AmBetter. We suggest you begin your search by assessing your current plan and looking for a new policy that will offer you the same or better coverage. Be prepared to provide employment, gender, home county and smoker status information to obtain a quote. Also be careful to note deadlines to sign up and when coverage will begin.
Employees: Your employer received rate increases and plan changes in early fall and may have faced some hard decisions about the bottom line impact of offering health benefits. Open enrollment is the time where employees may have to make some decisions as well. It is important to read through information provided and to take advantage of any information sessions or assistance by the insurer. At Wharton Insurance and Financial Services (WIFS), we hold open enrollment meetings for all of our clients’ employees to ensure everyone understands the plans and what changes can be made. It may be that you will have to assess which offered plan works for you and your family in 2018, or you may have new circumstances that need to be addressed. Even if you have no personal changes, we suggest you review your company plans carefully so you will know what to expect for the coming year.
Association Members: Many associations offer access to health insurance coverage as a benefit to membership. Similar to companies, these organizations have an open enrollment period to allow participants to assess their plan choices and costs, as well as account for life changes. This time of year is also when new members may enroll, so if you are looking for health coverage, it may be worthwhile to investigate membership in an applicable local association. For example, WIFS manages the health insurance plan for the Builder’s Association of Indianapolis, an organization focused on the local home improvement sector. It may be that your work or other affiliations could help provide you with quality health insurance coverage.
Wharton Insurance and Financial Services has helped individuals, businesses and associations work their way throughout the rapidly changing world that is health insurance. If you have questions or are looking for coverage for yourself or your employees, send us an email, or give us a call at 317- 663-4138.