Over the past few months and certainly during the next few, millions of Americans are discovering that they are losing their health insurance coverage due to layoffs caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. For those who are accustomed to having health insurance provided through their employer, the path towards obtaining private health insurance is not clear during the interim. The most important thing to consider is that once health insurance is lost, consumers have only sixty (60) days to enroll in a new plan through their state exchange, or if applicable, Healthcare.gov.
In the state of Nevada, consumers should begin their health insurance search by visiting Nevada Health Link's website. Bear in mind that outside of the annual Open Enrollment Period, which runs from November 1st to December 15th, Health Link requires documentation to verify any Special enrollment period. Nowadays, the most commonly seen SEP is triggered by a loss of health insurance through an employer, with the 2nd most common moving from out of state. You'll want to gather any documentation you may have from a layoff, specifically a document showing an end date of insurance coverage. In some cases where this is not possible, a bank statement showing payment to a health insurer will be sufficient, as will a paystub showing withdrawals for insurance. These documents are to be uploaded after the completion of a health insurance application on health link.
Consumers can reach Nevada Health Link by calling 1-800-547-2927 and following the prompts. After selecting your language preference, press 3 to be connected to a local agent or broker. Agents and brokers do not charge for their services, and using their help does not increase the price of the plan you select. Agents and brokers can assist with filling out the application correctly (they're more sensitive than you think), calculating incomes, and making plan recommendations, among other things. They can also provide assistance year round for things like needing new ID cards, changing incomes or address, or aiding in billing disputes if possible.
So if you have recently lost your job and health insurance (in the last 60 days), don't wait until it is too late to sign up for something through Nevada Health Link. Contact me or any other agent or broker for local assistance signing up.