Navigating the Affordable Care Act

Start here for answers on Affordable Care Act enrollment

Consumers shopping for health insurance plans under the Affordable Care Act could find cheaper premiums for next year, thanks to pandemic relief efforts.

The open enrollment period begins Tuesday and continues through Jan. 15.

That is two weeks longer than previous years, but if you want coverage to begin on Jan. 1, you must enroll by Dec. 15, said Steph Pugh, a certified application counselor with Lifecare Family Health and Dental Center in Canton, a federally qualified health center. Enrollments after Dec. 15 through Jan. 15 would start coverage on Feb. 1, she said.

The plans were created through the Affordable Care Act, also known as the ACA or Obamacare.

This is the 10th annual open enrollment for the ACA plans, which are available for those who don’t have health insurance through a job, Medicare, Medicaid or other source.

This year, 14.5 million people — including 259,999 Ohioans — signed up or were automatically re-enrolled in these plans. Enrollment for this year was up 21% from the previous year’s 12 million enrollees nationwide and 196,806 in Ohio.

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