Idaho: Not much to report, but...
OK, this "news" isn't remotely worth a full blog entry, but what the heck; Idaho has been radio silent since Open Enrollment started, so any news out of the Great Potato state is welcome:
Deadline to Apply for Health Insurance for the 2019 Plan Year is Dec. 15
- Nine in 10 Idahoans Qualify for a Tax Credit to Help Lower Monthly Premiums
BOISE, Idaho – Idahoans wanting health insurance coverage starting on January 1, only have a few days left to enroll in a plan for 2019 with Your Health Idaho, the state’s health insurance exchange. Idahoans must complete their application by midnight, December 15 in order to have coverage at the start of the new year. In response to high demand, Your Health Idaho is extending its support center hours to help customers enroll or answer any questions.
Again, I realize that doesn't mean much of anything on its own; I haven't a clue what counts as "high demand" in Idaho or how it differs from prior years. Still, it does suggest that things are running smoothly at the Idaho exchange.
Idaho is unique in the country in that it's the only completely GOP-run state which voluntarily operates their own full ACA exchange. Kentucky had kynect for a few years, but that was created via executive order by their previous Democratic governor; the moment a Republican replaced him, he shut the KY website down and moved the state over to HealthCare.Gov instead.
Idaho enrolled right around 100,000 people in exchange plans in 2016 and 2017, but dropped about 5% to 95,000 last year. They're sticking with the standard 12/15 deadline that most other states are, so it'll be interesting to see how they do this year...will they end up dropping again significantly the way most HC.gov states seem to be, or will they hold steady or even outperform 2018 as most of the other state-based exchanges are?
“We want to encourage Idahoans to enroll in health insurance and check to see if they are eligible for a tax credit to help offset costs of monthly premiums for health insurance. Nine in 10 Idahoans signing up for health insurance at Your Health Idaho qualify for a Tax Credit and most save 80 percent on monthly premiums. This savings helps many Idahoans get the coverage they need. Also, there are many Idahoans who may still be uninsured and don’t know that they may be eligible for a Tax Credit,” said Pat Kelly, executive director of Your Health Idaho.
The deadline to apply for health insurance is Saturday, December 15. If you have questions about getting the coverage you need for 2019, please contact an agent and broker near you who can assist you for free and help you navigate the health insurance application process. Agents and brokers can be found at YourHealthIdaho.org under the “Find Help” tab on our website.
“Enrollment numbers for health insurance on the exchange remains strong in Idaho. We attribute this success to Idahoans understanding the value of having health insurance coverage and knowing how their benefits help them especially when they need it most,” said Kelly.
Don’t delay in enrolling for health insurance this year, please visit YourHealthIdaho.org today to complete the application process and enroll in a plan by Midnight, Dec. 15, 2018. Also, our support center is available to answer any questions Idahoans may have and can be reached at 855.944.3246 Monday through Friday this week from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. and Saturday, Dec. 15 from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.