New Month, New Chance to #GetCovered

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March marks the beginning of spring, but this year it also marks an ending: the health insurance marketplaces set up by the Affordable Care Act (ACA) close for enrollment on March 31st.

The Affordable Care Act has made health insurance coverage accessible to many Americans who previously did not have or could not afford insurance. As a result of the ACA:

  • People with pre-existing conditions have more coverage options,
  • Many young people have remained covered under their parents' health insurance plan,
  • Older Americans are benefitting from lower prescription drug prices, including a discount on medicines for those facing the coverage gap in Medicare Part D.

However, the ACA still faces hurdles - notably, awareness and education in the general public. A recent Kaiser Family Foundation poll found that just 1 in 4 of uninsured people were aware of the March 31st enrollment deadline. Nearly two-thirds of respondents reported that they knew only a little or nothing at all about health insurance marketplaces.

To help more uninsured individuals and families sign up for health insurance plans, the White House and the Department of Health and Human Services have increased their outreach efforts. They've partnered with non-profit organization Enroll America to send nearly 20,000 volunteers into communities around the country and educate people about their insurance options. Even local governments are pitching in. Cincinnati Mayor John Cranley announced a partnership with Enroll America for a series of enrollment and education events held throughout the city over the next several weeks.

Over 3 million people have already enrolled in marketplace plans. How many will enroll by March 31st remains to be seen. Want to learn more? Visit HealthCare.Gov for more information.