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Like many young people, Nicole has experienced intermittent health insurance coverage for most of her adult life. While in school full time, she was covered under her parents' plan, but when they lost their coverage, so did she. When she left school to pursue other passions, her two part-time employers didn’t offer coverage. She went without coverage, and often times without care, for many years. Then, the Affordable Care Act became law in 2010 and she was able to rejoin her parent’s plan until she turned 26 and she was again without coverage.

With this coverage cutoff approaching, Nicole and I met to talk about MNsure.org and the new, more affordable health insurance plans being offered through its online health insurance marketplace. Nicole had already visited the website to compare plans, and we worked together for about an hour to complete her enrollment. At the end of our meeting, Nicole was beyond relieved at the extent of coverage that would be available to her and a monthly price that fit reasonably within her budget.

A snapshot of how this coverage looks:

  • Her monthly premiums will only cost 6% of her gross income.
  • For only $10 more dollars per month over the least expensive option, she found a silver-level plan that covered multiple providers in her area, giving her the peace of mind that she’ll be able to receive the care she needs with convenience and without out paying out-of-network costs.
  • Because of the ACA, her preventive care, annual visits, contraception, and vaccinations are all covered at no cost to her.
  • And most significantly, because of her income, Nicole qualified for a cost-sharing subsidy on her deductible, reducing it by 73 percent, meaning that once she reaches her (now reduced) $730 deductible, most foreseeable care will be available to her at no additional out-of-pocket costs.

As Nicole described it:

"It's time to be an adult, to take more responsibility for my health and well being, and to stand behind the Affordable Care Act so it’s a success for those of us who need it. The process of using MNsure.org did take some time, and was more complicated than I thought it would be, but I am going to be in a much better place starting January 1 because of this coverage and because of the help I received from my Navigator.”

Tags: minnesota

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