#Ready4OE2: Lots of Moving Parts, but One Simple Message for Renewals: Take Action!

By Jennifer Sullivan

UPDATE — November 14, 2014: Enroll America released an updated version of this infographic outlining the simple steps current enrollees need to take during open enrollment to stay covered for 2015:

Get Covered. Stay Covered_Nov15

As we count down to the start of the second open enrollment period (OE2) on November 15, Enroll America’s #Ready4OE2 blog series will feature a new entry every weekday in October sharing lessons learned from OE1 and strategies for OE2. For more tips and tools, check out the #Ready4OE2 webinar series!

Strategy for OE2: Demystify the renewals process for current enrollees, and encourage them to take action during open enrollment. Start with sharing the graphic above.

Who can use this strategy: Any individual or organization interested in making sure folks get covered and stay covered.

Today, we’re excited to share a new graphic that describes the simple steps consumers enrolled in marketplace coverage need take starting November 15.

Click here for the full-sized graphic.

Click here to download the graphic as a PDF.

As you may already know, there are a lot of reasons for current enrollees to take action in the months ahead, even if their current plan meets their needs, and even if they haven’t had any life changes since they enrolled.

Here’s why:

  1. From year to year, plans change. Provider networks and benefit designs may change from year to year. Plus, new plans may be available.
  2. The costs fluctuate, both monthly premiums and other cost-sharing requirements like deductibles and co-pays.
  3. The amount of financial help a consumer is eligible to receive could change depending on the relative costs of plans participating in the marketplace. This means that even if nothing has changed about a consumer’s financial circumstances, changes in the plans offered in their rating area could trigger changes in the amount of financial help a consumer can get in 2015. It’s especially important that consumers update their account information and check to make sure they’re getting the right amount of financial help, because they are on the hook for repaying tax credits later on if it turns out they received more than they qualified for.

Yikes! Even for trained assisters and eligibility experts, this can get complicated in a hurry. Plus, consumers will soon start to receive renewal notices from the marketplace and their insurance company, which could make things even more confusing. But the good news is, consumers don’t need to understand all these moving parts. They only need to be encouraged to take a few simple steps outlined in the graphic above.

Now, you may have heard that consumers don’t need to take action, and that they will be “auto-renewed” in coverage for 2015. This is a helpful backstop to make sure people don’t fall through the cracks, but the best way to make sure consumers have the right amount of financial help and a plan that continues to fit their needs and their budget is to take action. And the earlier the better. Consumers can change plans any time between November 15, 2014, and February 15, 2015, but taking action by December 15 ensures they start the new year with the best coverage and have the smoothest transition to that coverage.

Action Steps: We encourage you to use, share, print, and post the above graphic to help educate consumers about what to expect and why to take action. Click here to download the graphic as a PDF.

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