Rita Landgraf, Secretary
Jill Fredel, Director of Communications
302-255-9047, Pager 302-357-7498
Date: March 10, 2015
NEW CASTLE (March 10, 2015) - More than 25,000 Delawareans signed up for health care coverage during the second open enrollment period of the Health Insurance Marketplace, Secretary Rita Landgraf of the Delaware Department of Health and Social Services announced today as enrollment numbers were released by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
The total of 25,036, which includes first-time sign-ups plus those who renewed their plans, represents a 74 percent increase in sign-ups compared to 2014, when 14,397 Delawareans enrolled in coverage.
The federal report covers activity from Nov. 15, 2014, through Feb. 22, 2015, which includes sign-ups by individuals who were "in line" by the Feb. 15 open-enrollment deadline and were given a week to finish picking their plan.
"I am very pleased that so many Delawareans are finding coverage that meets their health needs and their budget," Secretary Landgraf said. "These numbers show that when it comes to broadening access to quality care for all residents, regardless of gender, income level, pre-existing conditions or other previous barriers, the Affordable Care Act is working."
Other Delaware numbers released in today's report:
The report did not include information on how many consumers have paid their first monthly premium to begin their coverage.
Today's report said that nearly 11.7 million Americans selected a plan or were automatically re-enrolled during the 2015 open enrollment period. The report is attached.
Secretary Landgraf will discuss today's report and give an update on Delaware's Health Insurance Marketplace at the next meeting of the Delaware Health Care Commission, scheduled for 9 a.m. Thursday, April 2, at the Duncan Center, 500 W. Loockerman St., Dover.
The federal government also recently announced a special enrollment period from March 15 to April 30 for those who owe a penalty for being uninsured in 2014 and who can attest that they first became aware of the fee or understood its implications after the end of open enrollment on Feb.15 while preparing their 2014 taxes. Those who remain uninsured in 2015 and aren't exempt from having coverage will face a penalty of $325 per person ($162.50 per child under 18) or 2 percent of annual household income, whichever is higher.
The next open enrollment period for 2016 coverage through the Health Insurance Marketplace runs from Nov. 1, 2015, to Jan. 31, 2016. Only those who experience qualifying life events such as moving to a new state, certain changes in income, and changes in family size (for example, through marriage, divorce, or having a child) will be eligible to enroll in 2015 coverage before Nov. 1.
For more information on the Health Insurance Marketplace, go to ChooseHealthDE.com or call the federal help center at 1 (800) 318-2596.
Delaware Health and Social Services is committed to improving the quality of the lives of Delaware's citizens by promoting health and well-being, fostering self-sufficiency, and protecting vulnerable populations.