With less than five days to go until the deadline to enroll for coverage that starts on January 1, 2014, the excitement is palpable. Navigators and other assistors are working around the clock to make sure people can meet the December 23 deadline, and thousands are enrolling online, by phone and in person. On Tuesday, the state reported that 363,258 New Yorkers had completed applications and 134,622 were fully enrolled. That’s a 34 percent increase from the just over 100,000 reported enrolled by December 9 – just one week earlier! And, it’s likely that enrollment numbers have increased by the thousands over the past few days. It’s a race to get covered by January 1, and New York remains in the lead pack of those states with the highest enrollment numbers.
In the midst of all of this activity, enrollees around the country have been given a little extra breathing room to pay their first-month’s premium. Recently, New York made the decision to allow consumers enrolling by the deadline to pay their first-month’s premium by January 10 and still receive coverage starting on January 1 – now, major health insurers nationwide have followed suit. And so, we have a new mantra for the next several days: enroll by December 23, pay by January 10, and get covered on January 1!
What happens after January 1? The fun won’t stop once the New Year hits. Open enrollment lasts until March 31, 2014, so we hope and expect to see thousands more getting covered after the 1st of the year.