The Open Enrollment Clock is Ticking: Help Eligible Individuals Get Covered by Jan. 31

Content From: Mira Levinson, Project Director, In It Together projectPublished: January 28, 20163 min read



Uninsured Americans have until January 31 to enroll in a 2016 qualified health plan. Many staff at Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program sites and elsewhere are working to assist people living with HIV in getting covered.

How many people have enrolled so far?

More than 11.6 million people are signed up nationwide through the Health Insurance Marketplaces.

How do you engage people who still have not enrolled?

About 10.5 million uninsured Americans were eligible for coverage through the Marketplaces at the beginning of Open Enrollment, and many of them are still unenrolled. It helps to understand why people may be reluctant to enroll and what messages may motivate them to consider coverage. Financial Help Is Available Many people without insurance are not aware of financial help to make coverage more affordable. And yet so far, more than 8 in 10 people who signed up for 2016 coverage have received financial help. In fact, many people can find low-premium plans for $75 or less per month. Consumers can use the Plan Estimator Tool to preview plans and price estimates before they apply. People's eligibility may have changed, and there are many new plan options, so it’s a good idea to compare costs and coverage every year to make sure they are getting the best deal.

The ACE TA Center Health Care Plan Selection WorksheetExit Disclaimer is another tool that assisters can use to help people living with HIV list their care needs, including medications and providers, and compare plans. People living with HIV often have concerns about affordability, too, but the Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program, including its AIDS Drug Assistance Program (ADAP), can often help with insurance and medication costs. And health insurance companies are required to cover HIV medications. While people are choosing a plan to apply for, they can check to see if their specific HIV medications are covered, and find out if their ADAP provides financial support for that plan. features new tools to help consumers estimate out-of-pocket costs, and see if their doctors, medical facilities and prescription drugs are covered.

Avoid the Fee for Not Having Health Insurance in 2016
People who can afford health insurance but choose not to enroll may have to pay a fee — $695 or more per adult. Some can get an exemption from the fee if an affordable plan is not available; if they are very low income and do not have to file a tax return; if they had a short gap in coverage; or if they are not lawfully present in the U.S. Learn more at

Resources to Support Consumers and Enrollment Assisters or Navigators

The ACE TA CenterExit Disclaimer has developed a consumer Q&AExit Disclaimer handout specifically for people living with HIV who get their care through the Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program to address some of these common questions and concerns people might have about coverage. A series of consumer postersExit Disclaimer was also designed to share some of the benefits of health insurance and spark conversations about enrollment.

In addition, the ACE TA Center offers tools and resources for case managers and other enrollment assistersExit Disclaimer, including those who may be new to supporting people living with HIV.

Remember, if people don’t enroll by January 31, they can’t get Marketplace coverage for 2016 unless they qualify for a Special Enrollment Period. Get covered today!

The HRSA-supported ACE TA Center works with Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program grant recipients and sub-recipients to help diverse clients get enrolled in health coverage. Learn more at Disclaimer .

Learn more at