Jan. 31 is deadline to enroll in health insurance

It’s not too late to sign up for health insurance this year, but the Jan. 31 deadline is approaching.

January is the last month for open enrollment on the Health Insurance Marketplace, according to a press release from SEARHC.

Medical coverage will begin Feb. 1 for those that sign up before Jan. 15. Signing up after Jan. 15 means coverage begins March 1.

Medical insurance was automatically renewed in 2017 for many with insurance through the Health Insurance Marketplace. Those that want to change those plans or did not pay the January premium on time, also have this month to make sure they have proper coverage.

There are two ways to pay for Premera Blue Cross coverage. The first is to mail a check to Premera Blue Cross Blue Shield of Alaska, P.O. Box 741103, Los Angeles, CA 90074-1103. The second is to pay online by visiting https://www.premera.com/ak/member/manage-my-account/pay-my-bill.

“It is not too late to sign up for health insurance,” Andrea Thomas, SEARHC Outreach and Enrollment Manager, said in a statement. “If you need assistance exploring your options there are lots of people in Alaska to help.”

Thomas added, “It is also important to understand that most people applying for medical insurance on the Health Insurance Marketplace receive assistance with lowering monthly premiums.”

Alaskans can sign up through the Health Insurance Marketplace by visiting the official website, www.healthcare.gov or by calling the Health Insurance Marketplace directly at 1-800-318- 2596, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Those who would like assistance with the application process can call the Alaska Primary Care Association at 1-844-752-6725 or contact the SEARHC Outreach and Enrollment team at 966-8883, 966-8662 or toll-free at 1-855-966-8684 Monday through Friday, from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. SEARHC is a Certified Application Counselor agency and offers free enrollment assistance to all Southeast Alaska residents.

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