Thursday, May 2, 2013

HHS Revises Insurance Marketplace Application

Back in March, NAHAM News reported that the draft Health Insurance Marketplace application ran 15 pages for a family of three, with some versions going as many as 21 pages. (See the original article here ) Responding to feedback, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) released a shortened form on Tuesday, running just five pages for a single applicant and beginning at 12 for families.

According to an article in the Washington Post, the new form “essentially scaled back [the] draft application that could cover all applicants to one that covers the most common, basic cases of those who apply for insurance assistance. Different forms will be available for the more complex cases.” The form also includes a page of instructions and another page if the applicant wants to designate someone to help them.

The revised form has won over groups who criticized the first version, such as Families USA, but there are some expectations that it will not be used much. A lot of the applicants will probably apply online, where information will be collected in a different manner. Others may utilize customer navigators who are tasked with helping applicants figure out which insurance option suits them the best, according to the Post.

This comes in the wake of a poll also released Tuesday by the Kaiser Family Foundation that found that 42 percent of Americans thought that the Affordable Care Act was no longer law. Included in the 42 percent are 12 percent that believe the law was repealed by Congress, 7 percent that believe it was struck down by the Supreme Court, and 23 percent that didn’t know the current status of the law.

Open enrollment for all uninsured citizens is set to begin in October, with coverage to begin in January of 2014. 

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