Open enrollment 2019: How to enroll for the Affordable Care Act

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If you are looking to re-enroll this year or sign up for the Affordable Care Act for the very first time, there are a few things you should know.

Visit Healthcare.gov and create an account.

From there you will be asked to provide the website with a list of personal information. That information can be found on the Market Application Checklist found here. This will save you time in completing the application and selecting a plan that is best for you and your family.

If you would like to compare plans and prices prior to making a decision, Healthcare.gov allows users to review various options that work best for you. You can find the link here: https://www.healthcare.gov/see-plans/

Example 1

  • Wake County woman
  • 39 years old
  • Single, no kids
  • Not pregnant, does not use tobacco products
  • $30,000 household income
  • LOWEST EST. MONTHLY PREMIUM - $62.35
  • HIGHEST EST. MONTHLY PREMIUM - $654.04

Example 2

  • Married Wake County woman
  • 39 years old
  • 2 kids (girls, ages 1 & 4)
  • Not pregnant, does not use tobacco products
  • $75,000 household income
  • LOWEST EST. MONTHLY PREMIUM - $111.94
  • HIGHEST EST. MONTHLY PREMIUM - $2,020.16


Like other insurance, the cost varies per person and per family. It's important to shop for the right plan for you and your family. According to figures from the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services, just shy of 520,000 North Carolinians enrolled in the Affordable Care Act last year. The exact number is 519,803.

For those getting insured for the first time or deciding between having coverage or going without, the Secretary for North Carolina's Department of Health and Human Services Mandy Cohen said, "...car accidents happen...and you can wind up in the emergency room with a huge bill. Don't let that weigh on you." Cohen, both a mom and a physician, understands North Carolinians will want to think about the cost when making a decision. "Don't let that weigh on you," Cohen said. "Go get that insurance and have that peace of mind."

Consumers have until Dec. 15, which is a shorter enrollment period than last year.

If you need in-person help, an organization called NC Navigator Consortium will host events through the end of the enrollment period to help users get enrolled. You can find a listing of dates and times on their website. You can also use GetCoveredAmerica.org for assistance in-person.

Perhaps the biggest difference in enrolling in the marketplace this year versus last, Congress passed a law so there is no penalty for not signing up for the Affordable Care Act.
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