Good morning —
It is now December 15th.
ACA open enrollment is ongoing. There is a short term deadline coming up today. If you want coverage to start on January 1, 2022, you must pick your plan by 11:59PM local time, tonight, December 15,2021.
Open Enrollment goes goes through January 15th on healthcare.gov. It goes at least that long on the state based marketplaces with the exception of Idaho which shuts off open enrollment on Wednesday December 22, 2021. Open enrollment is the time when you can sign up for a health insurance plan for any reason at all. You can choose a new plan if you’re already in the market. If you’re currently uninsured, you can pick an ACA plan without a special reason. But the late December and January period is for insurance that starts on February 1, 2022.
So what are the big things to remember:
- Get on it today — A significant chunk of all enrollment happens on the 15th. There is likely to be a long line for help.
- Know what are your core constraints — what hospitals/doctors do you have to have, what drugs do you take, how much can you afford each month and what is the maximum oh-shit amount you can pay?
- Accept that insurance is confusing and complex
- Accept that your goal is to get good enough instead of perfect where good enough is often, for people without significant medical history, avoiding the really bad and hideous.
If there are questions, leave them in comments, and I’ll be monitoring throughout the day.