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ACA open enrollment underway

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH)- Open enrollment for many Hoosiers’ healthcare started Wednesday. But, for many people, signing up or renewing under the Affordable Care Act is overwhelming.

Kellie Blackmon said she is basically in health insurance limbo.

“I have no insurance coverage,” Blackmon explained. “I’m getting older, and I do need to get to some doctors and get a workup.”

But her family’s budget is tight, so she’s trying to enroll in coverage under the Affordable Care Act. She is unsure of which plan to select and said the process makes her feel like giving up.

“Forget it,” Blackmon said. “(I’ll) try to find something different. It’s just that difficult and frustrating.”

Susan Rider, a benefits and human capital consultant with Gregory and Appel Insurance, said the Affordable Care Act is confusing to most people.

Rider said 174,611 people enrolled in the ACA through the Indiana Marketplace during the 2017 open enrollment period, an 11 percent decrease from 2016. Open enrollment for the ACA ends December 15.

“When you go out to , you’re going to compare plans side by side, similar to how you would buy a flight or buy a hotel,” Rider explained.

Rider said when enrolling, do the following:

  • Look at which hospitals, pharmacies, and urgent care centers are close to home and in-network.
  • Make sure your doctors and specialists are in-network.
  • Know which prescription drugs are covered.
  • Watch your deductibles, co-pays, and most importantly, your out-of-pocket max.

Rider said it’s best to find people who are certified to sell insurance within the marketplace. You can get free help via the ACA 24-hours a day by calling 1 (800) 318-2596 or by visiting its website. More information about how to enroll and about the ACA are also available. 

Rider also recommends using a licensed, certified broker to help, and that broker services are already paid for by your monthly premiums. Help finding a broker is also available.