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Targeting Nevada’s Remaining Uninsured

The open enrollment period for health insurance coverage in 2016 through ends Sunday, Jan. 31. (wavebreak/iStockphoto)
The open enrollment period for health insurance coverage in 2016 through ends Sunday, Jan. 31. (wavebreak/iStockphoto)
January 25, 2016

CARSON CITY, Nev. - Time is short for Nevadans to sign up for subsidized health insurance through the state marketplace; the deadline is just six days away. The annual three-month open enrollment period to be covered for this year ends on Sunday. So, Nevada Health Link is launching a big push to get people who are uninsured to enroll.

Mike Perry, a pollster with Perry Undem Research Communications, has analyzed why some people are still holding back.

"Their feelings about affordability are based more on their own family budget, knowing that there's just no money left over at the end of the month," says Perry. "Particularly that group that has not yet gone to the marketplace, it's the perception that they can't afford it. It's not really based on factual knowledge."

Nevada has an uninsured rate of 14 percent. That may be high, but it's a lot better than 20 percent, which is what it was before the Affordable Care Act took effect. Statistics show almost three-quarters of the state's uninsured population lives in Clark County.

Perry says his research shows that people who already signed up in recent weeks did so to get protection from big medical bills, and to avoid the federal penalty for not having insurance, which starts at about $700 a person. He adds there's still a big knowledge gap around the marketplace and the subsidies available to help many people pay for their coverage.

"For example, we found 73 percent of the uninsured who have not yet gone to the marketplace say they either don't understand the marketplace, or have never heard of it before," says Perry.

To sign up for health insurance through the marketplace, or find a trained navigator who can help you with the signup process, look online at

Suzanne Potter, Public News Service - NV