Maryland: @MarylandConnect extends re-opened #COVID19 Enrollment Period through May 15th

Five weeks ago the Maryland Health Connection announced they were re-opening ACA enrollment through March 15th in light of the ongoing COVID19 pandemic.

When the Biden Administration announced a few weeks later that the federal ACA exchange, HealthCare.Gov, was planning on re-opening enrollment across 36 states for a full 3 months (from Februay 15th - May 15th), however, I was pretty sure that it would only be a matter of time before most of the state-based exchanges matched up with that time window...and sure enough, via the MD Health Connection:

GOV. HOGAN ANNOUNCES EXTENSION OF STATE HEALTH INSURANCE SPECIAL ENROLLMENT PERIOD UNTIL MAY 15

(BALTIMORE) — Gov. Larry Hogan and Maryland Health Benefit Exchange announced today that the state health insurance marketplace, Maryland Health Connection, will extend its current special enrollment period. Uninsured Marylanders have the opportunity to enroll in health coverage now until May 15. This deadline aligns with the federal special enrollment period announced by President Joe Biden for those states who use healthcare.gov, the federally run health insurance marketplace.

It's important to note that like some other states, Maryland is restricting this to currently uninsured Maryland residents only, which means current exchange enrollees won't be able to switch plans mid-year.

“After last year's COVID-19 special enrollment period saw record participation, we're pleased to offer even more opportunities for Marylanders to enroll in coverage,” said Governor Hogan. “I strongly encourage Marylanders to consider taking advantage of this extension as we all look forward to a safer and healthier 2021.”

Coverage start dates follow:

“Maryland Health Connection is eager to align with the federal administration as well as other state marketplaces across the country to make health insurance more accessible as the pandemic continues to have devastating effects,” said Michele Eberle, executive director of the Maryland Health Benefit Exchange.

  • Enroll by Feb. 15, coverage starts Feb. 1
  • Enroll Feb. 16–March 15, coverage starts March 1
  • Enroll March 16–April 15, coverage starts April 1
  • Enroll April 16–May 15, coverage starts May 1

Those who are eligible for Medicaid can enroll any time of year. Health coverage through Maryland Health Connection covers costs for coronavirus tests at doctor’s offices, urgent care centers or emergency rooms.

Since the pandemic spurred a public health emergency in March 2020, Maryland Health Connection has recognized the invaluable need for health insurance by running a coronavirus special enrollment period. Thus far, more than 125,000 Marylanders have enrolled, most of whom have received free or low-cost coverage.

To learn more about coverage options, visit the website.

Free help is available over the phone from more than 700 certified navigators and brokers. In addition, individuals can call 1-855-642-8572 toll- free from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. weekdays. Help is available in 200 languages. Deaf and hard of hearing use Relay. Marylanders can also apply for coverage using the free mobile app, Enroll MHC.