Enroll in the Health Insurance Marketplace
Most Americans are required to have health insurance or pay a penalty. In the Missouri Health Insurance Marketplace, you can compare plans, find options to lower your costs and buy health insurance.
What is Health Insurance?
Health insurance helps you pay for medical care and can protect you from high health care costs, such as emergency room visits and hospital stays. These bills can add up quickly and often cause people to go into debt, or even bankruptcy.
There are important things to look at when buying health insurance:
- The health services the plan covers.
- How much you'll pay for the plan - your monthly premiums.
- How much you'll pay for things such as doctor visits and prescription medicines - cost sharing.
What is the Health Insurance Marketplace?
The Health Insurance Marketplace is a website where you can compare insurance plans, and buy the plan that best fits your needs. Private insurance companies offer the health plans sold in the marketplace. You can use the Marketplace if you're an individual or family who doesn't have access to affordable coverage through work.
Open enrollment is scheduled to begin Nov. 1, 2017 and end Dec. 15, 2017, for insurance effective Jan. 1, 2018.
Certified Application Counselors
Certified Application Counselors are trained to help consumers, small businesses and their employees shop for health insurance coverage through the Marketplace. They can also help you complete eligibility and enrollment forms. CAC's provide free, unbiased assistance.
Special Enrollment Periods
If you miss open enrollment and have certain life changes, you may qualify for a special enrollment period to start your coverage sooner.
Life changes that can qualify you for a special enrollment period:
- Having a baby, adopting a child, or placing a child for foster care
- Getting married
- Losing health coverage, including a job-based plan; Medicaid, CHIP or Medicare; or a student health plan
- Losing coverage through a family member's death, divorce or legal separation, or change in dependent status.
Other special enrollment periods:
- Moving to a new state, county or ZIP code (including students moving to or from school, seasonal work moves, or moves from a shelter or transitional housing)
- Moving to the U.S. form a foreign country or U.S. territory
- Changes in your income or household size that affect the coverage you qualify for
- Gaining membership in a federally recognized tribe or status as an Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act (ANCSA) Corporation shareholder
- Becoming newly eligible for Marketplace coverage because you became a U.S. citizen
- Leaving incarceration
- AmeriCorps VISTA members starting or ending their service.
If you think you qualify for a special enrollment period, start a Marketplace application or log in to an existing one. You'll find out if you qualify, and either way we'll tell you when your coverage starts. When you apply you'll also find out if you qualify for coverage through Medicaid or the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP). If you do, coverage can start the day you apply or earlier.
Please note that you may need to submit documents to prove you qualify.