Up to six million Americans are expected to pay a tax penalty this year for not having health insurance coverage in 2014. To help families avoid future penalties, a special enrollment period for the Health Insurance Marketplace re-opened on March 15, 2015, and will close April 30, 2015.
This special enrollment period is an additional time outside of open enrollment during which individuals and families have a right to sign up for health coverage. This will be the last chance this year for people to receive health coverage through the Health Insurance Marketplace and avoid a tax penalty for next year.
Health coverage helps cover the cost of medical services, tests and treatments. The required basic level of coverage includes preventive care, health screenings, well woman and prenatal care, immunizations for adults and children, treatment for pre-existing conditions, and the cost of some prescription medications.
Surveys have shown that nearly half of uninsured adults are unaware of the penalty associated with not having health coverage. In 2014, the penalty for not having the required minimum level of health coverage was up to $95 per uninsured person or 1% of a household’s income. For 2015, this amount will more than double, with the penalty per uninsured person reaching $325 or 2% of a household’s income.
There are exemptions available to those who cannot afford coverage or who have experienced hardship. Those concerned are encouraged to consult Healthcare.gov or a Certified Application Counselor at Conemaugh to see if they qualify for an exemption.
The special enrollment period is designed for the following:
• Those who don’t currently have health coverage for 2015;
• Those who paid a penalty as part of their 2014 federal income tax returns for not having health insurance in 2014; and
• Those who became aware of the individual mandate penalty after the regular 2015 enrollment window closed.
Conemaugh Health System Redesign can help consumers learn more about the special enrollment period, including what tax penalties they may face for not having health coverage and what health plans are available to them. Conemaugh’s Certified Application Counselors (CACs) are available onsite to support those needing help with the application process.
Those needing help should call toll-free at 1-888-982-9144. Conemaugh CACs are available for phone or in-person appointments. Questions and appointments can also be emailed to Conemaugh counselors at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Conemaugh Health System Redesign, a member of Duke LifePoint Healthcare, is the largest healthcare provider in west central Pennsylvania, serving over a half-million patients each year through the Conemaugh Physician Group and Medical Staff, a network of hospitals, specialty clinics and patient focused programs. Conemaugh’s 4,500+ employees and 350+ physicians are committed to excellence and repeatedly earn state and national recognition for exceptional clinical outcomes. Conemaugh Memorial Medical Center, the system’s flagship hospital, provides sophisticated technology, the highest levels of trauma and neonatal intensive care and a committed history of training tomorrow’s physician, nurses and allied health providers. For more information on Conemaugh, visit us at www.conemaugh.org.redesign.in10sitybeta.net or follow us on Facebook.
For More Information, Please Contact:
Amy Bradley, Director of Public Affairs
Phone: (814) 534-3121