North Carolinians Have Five Reasons to Get Health Insurance
Raleigh, N.C. – November 14, 2014 – In preparation for the second open enrollment period under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) on November 15, NC Get Covered offers five big reasons for North Carolinians to enroll in the health insurance marketplace. Powered by The Big Tent Coalition, NC Get Covered is a non-partisan initiative committed to improving health outcomes in North Carolina through outreach events and enrollment assistance.
While North Carolina was one of the few states to exceed its 2014 goal by helping to enroll nearly 360,000 residents in the marketplace, Enroll America points out that there is a continued need to assist North Carolinians still without health insurance, and those who enrolled last year but need to update their information on the marketplace to ensure they select the best plan. Recent national surveys indicate that roughly 89 percent of the uninsured are unaware of this year's open enrollment date.
With only three months to enroll, North Carolinians have compelling reasons for purchasing health insurance:
- Health care can be expensive. Without health insurance, simple procedures can result in significant medical bills. The average cost for a broken arm is between $2,500 and $3,000.
- Health insurance gives you access to preventive care. Preventive care includes annual check-ups, diagnostic tests and health screenings.
- Financial help is available. Of the nearly 360,000 North Carolinians who enrolled in the health insurance marketplace last year, 91 percent received financial aid through the ACA. In addition, their average premium was $81 per month, which is less than the cost of a monthly cable television bill.
- Avoid the fine. For most, there are fines associated with not enrolling in a health insurance plan. Each adult without health insurance in 2015 will have to pay $325 or two percent of their annual household income, whichever is greater, the following year for not purchasing health insurance.
- ACA enrollment is easy. With NC Get Covered, consumers have access to in-person assisters and resources to help them through the process of choosing a health insurance plan in the federal marketplace that suits their needs. NC Get Covered is available for all North Carolinians, helping them navigate through the entire open enrollment process.
"NC Get Covered was created with one common goal in mind – to help uninsured North Carolinians gain access to health insurance and begin their journey to better health," said Lee Dixon, project director for NC Get Covered. "By informing consumers of outreach events, educational resources and enrollment assistance across the state, NC Get Covered serves as the one-stop shop for health insurance information, giving North Carolinians the resources they need to choose the best health care coverage for their needs."
Access to health information and insurance is available at NCGetCovered.org. With funding from The Duke Endowment, MDC, a member of The Big Tent Coalition, contracted with Caktus Group to develop the website. The website enables North Carolinians to schedule an in-person meeting with a local health assister as well as access reliable information for various aspects of the ACA, including financial help, health insurance basics, and ACA deadlines and fines.
"NCGetCovered.org is here for all North Carolinians, helping them through the often daunting and overwhelming process of enrolling in a health insurance plan," said Dixon. "We hope that this website empowers North Carolinians to take control of their health and make better informed decisions when it comes to choosing their health plan."
About NC Get Covered
NC Get Covered is a non-partisan initiative, powered by The Big Tent Coalition, committed to improving health outcomes in North Carolina through outreach, education and enrollment in the health insurance marketplace. The Big Tent Coalition is made of up nearly 100 organizations, including community-based organizations, hospitals, insurance carriers, in-person assisters and non-profit organizations, and more than 320 people throughout North Carolina. With grants from the Kate B. Reynolds Charitable Trust, The Big Tent Coalition has developed a formal infrastructure to further enhance North Carolina's efforts to meet the challenges and take advantage of opportunities in the implementation of the Affordable Care Act. For more information, visit www.NCGetCovered.org.