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PNS Daily Newscast - November 16, 2018 


Winter Storm Avery takes lives, puts the brakes on commutes across the Northeast. Also on our Friday rundown: A first-of-its-kind report calls for policies to ease transitions of young people living in foster care. And "got gratitude" this holiday season? It could benefit your health.

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Time's Running Short to Get Marketplace Health Insurance

Health officials say some Kentuckians eligible for tax subsidies through the federal health-insurance marketplace are paying as little as $1 a month for a 2018 plan. (401(k)2012/Flickr)
Health officials say some Kentuckians eligible for tax subsidies through the federal health-insurance marketplace are paying as little as $1 a month for a 2018 plan. (401(k)2012/Flickr)
December 11, 2017

FRANKFORT, Ky. – Kentuckians who need medical insurance in 2018 have just a few more days to apply for it through the federal Health Insurance Marketplace.

The open enrollment period has been 45 days shorter than last year – and it ends this Friday.

John Watkins, acting executive director, Kentucky Health Benefit Exchange says there are assisters available in every county that can help people evaluate their options, and find out if they are income-eligible for tax credits that can reduce their monthly rates substantially.

"Because of the unique dynamics this year in most Kentucky regions, a dollar to $50 is what we've seen that people are able to get if they're getting some of these tax credits to help pay their premium," he states.

Watkins says more than 36,000 Kentuckians have already actively enrolled in a marketplace plan, a number that doesn't include people who have been automatically re-enrolled.

Information on insurance plans and local resources can be found online at healthcare.gov.

There is only one insurance provider offering marketplace plans in each county in Kentucky – Anthem Blue Cross is in 59 counties, and CareSource is in the other 61.

And Watkins recommends anyone who might have questions about coverage reach out to local assisters, given the overall uncertainty about the future of the health care law.

"The ACA is active and is the same as it was a year ago, for the most part,” she states. “I will say that, because of all of the national discussion and headlines that have been going on, it's important for those that are trying to select the appropriate plan to go to an in-person assister."

According to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, more than 1.5 million Americans have signed up for a marketplace health plan since open enrollment began on Nov. 1.


Mary Kuhlman, Public News Service - KY