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Open Enrollment for Health Insurance

What Is Open Enrollment For Health Insurance?  


Open Enrollment is the period each year when you're allowed to enroll in or make changes to your Marketplace health insurance plan. It’s the perfect time to review your health insurance to ensure you have coverage that meets your needs and budget.

When Is Open Enrollment?


Open Enrollment typically runs from November 1 to January 31 annually, but actual dates can vary by state. Knowing the timing and the different plan options in your state can help you be more prepared when Open Enrollment begins.



How Does Open Enrollment Work?


During Open Enrollment, you may be able to keep the health insurance plan you currently have or change your plan based on new needs in coverage or cost. The Health Insurance Marketplace, established by the Affordable Care Act (ACA), helps you find health coverage that fits your needs. During Open Enrollment, you can compare plans for price, benefits, and networks in order to make the right coverage decision for you and your family.


The Marketplace offers plans in four “metal” levels: Bronze, Silver, Gold, and Platinum. Metal levels differ only in how you and your insurance provider share the overall cost. Check for availability, as not all metal level plans are available in all areas.


Bronze Plan

With a Bronze plan, you receive the lowest monthly premium, but it has the highest deductible. A Bronze plan is your best choice when you do not visit your doctor beyond preventive care visits but want peace-of-mind protection for medical emergencies.


Silver Plan

Silver plans have a slightly higher average monthly premium but offer a lower deductible than a Bronze plan. If you qualify, you can save even more with a Silver plan by receiving a cost-sharing reduction.


Gold Plan

Selecting a Gold plan means the monthly premium is higher, and the deductible is lower than a Silver plan. Gold may be the best plan if you require a lot of healthcare because most of your routine medical care costs are covered.


Platinum Plan

When you choose a Platinum plan, you receive the highest monthly premium and the lowest deductible. While not available in all areas, Platinum may be a good plan option when you rely on frequent medical care and want the most coverage.



How Can I Save On My Insurance During Open Enrollment?


Open Enrollment may also be an opportunity for you to pay less for health insurance. In 2021, 9 out of 10 enrollees received financial help through health insurance subsidies, which significantly reduced the cost of purchasing health coverage through the Marketplace.1 Learn more about health insurance subsidies to see if you qualify.



What Happens If I Miss Open Enrollment?


You may qualify for a Special Enrollment Period if you have a qualifying life event. A Special Enrollment may give you the chance to secure healthcare protection outside of Open Enrollment.



What Is A Qualifying Life Event?


Some of the most common qualifying life events for a Special Enrollment Period include:

  • Getting married.

  • Having a baby or adopting a child.

  • Losing your existing health coverage.

  • Becoming divorced or separated.

  • Experiencing the death of a spouse or partner who provided health insurance coverage.



When Can I Add Extra Coverage Like Dental And Vision?


Supplemental insurance plans like dental, vision, accident insurance, critical illness insurance, and hospital recovery insurance are available all year round, not just during Open Enrollment.



Receive help with Open Enrollment


At Anthem, we understand that during Open Enrollment you could use a helping hand. Anthem will guide you through the Open Enrollment process and assist in choosing a health insurance plan that matches your needs and life today.

Find The Right Marketplace Plan

Compare health insurance plans and find one that fits your needs.

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Related Articles

1CMS.gov website: Health Insurance Exchanges 2019 Open Enrollment Report (accessed April 2021).