Amid a Global Pandemic, High-Quality Health Insurance More Important Than Ever
Nearly All Marketplace Enrollees Will See No Cost Increase in 2021
Thousands of Trained Enrollment Assistors Are Ready to Help
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that on November 1, NY State of Health - the state's official health plan Marketplace - will launch Open Enrollment for 2021 Qualified Health Plans.
"New York has done more than any state to expand access to healthcare and make high-quality insurance available to everyone," Governor Cuomo said. "And as we continue to fight COVID-19, making sure every New Yorker is insured and has access to quality healthcare has only become more critical. If you are not insured, make 2021 the year you change that, go online or call NY State of Health for assistance."
Access to health insurance is particularly important as New York continues to confront a global pandemic, and all New Yorkers who are currently enrolled in a Qualified Health Plan through NYSOH are encouraged to renew their coverage. Anyone without health insurance should also visit the website and take this opportunity to enroll. Open Enrollment will continue through January 31, 2021. Due to the ongoing COVID-19 public health emergency, consumers already enrolled in Medicaid, Child Health Plus, or the Essential Plan will have their coverage continued automatically and do not need to renew at this time.
NY State of Health, together with the State Department of Financial Services and New York State insurers, launched a Special Enrollment Period in February 2020 and recently extended it through the end of the year, to ensure that people do not avoid seeking COVID-19-related testing or medical care due to a lack of health insurance coverage.
Commissioner of the New York State Department of Health Dr. Howard Zucker said, "NY State of Health continues to serve as a safety net for consumers in need of coverage during the public health emergency and has seen enrollment levels increase to over 5.5 million people. As we look ahead to 2021, the plan choices are consistent with 2020 and we will continue to be available to help consumers enroll through both the Customer Service Center and enrollment assistors, who will be available by phone."
As part of the FY 2020 Enacted State Budget, New York State codified the critical consumer protections from the Affordable Care Act into state law, including the ban on preexisting condition exclusions, the prohibition on annual and lifetime dollar limits, the guarantee of quality essential health benefits, and the ability to keep children on their parents' plans through age 26.
NY State of Health expects to renew Qualified Health Plan coverage for nearly 200,000 households and enroll new consumers into coverage during the Open Enrollment Period. Current enrollees, including those who enrolled in a Qualified Health Plan through a Special Enrollment Period, have already begun to receive their 2021 renewal notices and may begin renewing coverage on November 16, 2020. Notices will include information about premiums, tax credits, and how to select a plan, if applicable. Consumers who are renewing coverage are advised to update their account with any changes to income, address, or family size before enrollment begins. Most QHP and EP consumers have a choice of at least four plans in their county again in 2021.
Consumers can plan ahead for Open Enrollment by browsing through their health plan options. Free enrollment assistance can be found in local communities across the State. Consumers can also use the NYS Provider & Health Plan Look-Up Tool to research provider networks and health plans. With this tool, consumers shopping for health insurance can search for their preferred health care providers, including doctors and hospitals, all in one place, to see which health plans have those providers in their network.
Enrollment in the Essential Plan, Medicaid and Child Health Plus is open all year. For additional information, visit the NY State of Health website at: nystateofhealth.ny.gov.
Consumers can enroll in a health plan by:
Calling the Customer Service Center at 1-855-355-5777