The deadline to enroll in a 2018 Marketplace health insurance plan is Friday, December 15, 2017. A person can visit www.HealthCare.govto create an account and review options for coverage. Then the person can apply for coverage for 2018. All plans on the government Marketplace offer essential benefits, such as emergency room visits and prescription drug coverage, as well as preventive care including shots and screenings. The plans offered are run by private insurance companies. Many states have a variety of plans available.
Some people in the CF community think that the Affordable Care Act has been repealed. This NOT true. The Affordable Care Act is still the law of the land.
This means that some people with CF may be eligible for premium help when purchasing a policy on the Marketplace. The household income cut off is much higher than the cut off for Medicaid which means many people with CF may be eligible for help paying their premiums if their plan is purchased through the Marketplace.
Some states run their own Marketplaces. When a person goes to www.Healthcare.gov the site will link them to their state marketplace if the state has their own marketplace.
In some cases the premium help that is available is higher than the help that has been available in prior years.
The only way to enroll in a health plan through the Marketplace after December 15, 2017 is if you qualify for a Special Enrollment Period. A person qualifies for a Special Enrollment Period if the person has certain life events occur such as losing health coverage, moving, having a change in income, getting married or having a change in family size.
If a person with CF is without health insurance coverage or wants to see if a better more affordable option is available then he or she should go to www.Healthcare.gov to see what is available before time runs out.
The Cystic Fibrosis Engagement Network, a project of the Alliance for Patient Access, released a new white paper, “Making Treatment Accessible for Cystic Fibrosis Patients.” The white paper details what’s standing in the way of patient access to new treatments approved to target some of the genetic mutations that cause Cystic Fibrosis – and how addressing bureaucratic barriers could help the 30,000 Americans living with this rare disease. For the patients with specific mutations, these treatments can significantly improve lung function and quality of life.