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DC Health Link Continues Health Insurance Enrollment This Week to Meet High Demand

For Immediate Release: Sunday, February 15, 2015

Contact: Adam Hudson: (202) 527-5622; adam.hudson@dc.gov

Linda Wharton-Boyd: (202) 351-9777; linda.wharton-boyd@dc.gov

 

Inclement Weather Conditions, Demand for In-Person Help, and High Call Volume, Mean Additional Time for Some Consumers to Enroll

(Washington, DC) – Today, the DC Health Benefit Exchange Authority (DCHBX) announced that it will continue to enroll District residents for individual and family coverage through DC Health Link past the February 15, 2015 deadline. DCHBX made this decision to ensure that all residents who tried to enroll before the February 15 deadline, but may have experienced some difficulty, will have health insurance coverage starting March 1, 2015.

During the final days of the Open Enrollment Period, DC Health Link experienced a surge in last-minute shopping; resulting in longer lines at enrollment centers, higher call volume at the Contact Center, and increased traffic on DCHealthLink.com. Additionally, two church sites closed due to weather conditions and DC Health Link had to redirect consumers to other nearby locations and/or the Call Center.

Residents who experienced difficulties that prevented them from completing enrollment before the February 15 deadline are encouraged to send an email that includes their contact information and the nature of the difficulties experienced to info@dchealthlink.com. DC Health Link will follow up with these consumers and will work with them to complete their enrollment for coverage effective March 1, 2015.

For in-person assistance with the sign-up process, identity verification, case management and technical support , DC Health Link customer service representatives will work with residents this week to make sure their health insurance coverage is in place for March 1st coverage as soon as possible. Residents are encouraged to bring all of the needed enrollment items to complete enrollment. The enrollment checklist is available at DCHealthLink.com.

WHEN: Tuesday, February 17, 2015 (Pending weather conditions) 1:00 pm – 8:00 pm

WHERE: Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library 901 G Street, NW

BACKGROUND: The Affordable Care Act provides individuals, families, and small businesses in the District of Columbia with affordable options for quality health insurance through a new online health insurance marketplace called DC Health Link. Residents can only apply for public insurance called Medicaid. There are 31 different private health insurance options (plus 3 catastrophic plans) from Aetna, CareFirst Blue Cross Blue Shield, and Kaiser Permanente for individuals and families. There are 193 private health insurance options for small businesses from Aetna, CareFirst Blue Cross Blue Shield, Kaiser Permanente, and United Healthcare.

For individuals and families, the second open enrollment began November 15, 2014 and ended February 15, 2015. People can apply for Medicaid coverage any time during the year. Small businesses can enroll any time during the year. Additionally, residents who qualify for a special enrollment period, for reasons such as losing their job or moving to the District, can enroll through DCHealthLink.com when they have a triggering event any time during the year.

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