Last updated: March 15. 2014 4:49PM - 825 Views

*On average, the plan will pay this percentage of the total cost of the policy's benefits
*On average, the plan will pay this percentage of the total cost of the policy's benefits
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The deadline to enroll for health insurance is March 31, and the Medical Center of Southeastern Oklahoma can help people enroll.

The Medical Center of Southeastern Oklahoma (MCSO) is available to assist consumers who have not yet enrolled for health insurance, MCSO officials said.

The Affordable Care Act requires that most Americans obtain health insurance by March 31, 2014, or pay a tax penalty. The penalty will be applied to your annual taxable income for each month you do not have insurance after March 31, 2014.

Anyone who needs assistance or has questions regarding the enrollment can contact one of the hospital’s Certified Application Counselors at 580-924-3080, ext. 1490.

For those who do not have access to a computer and want to enroll, MCSO will have computers available for the public use to enroll beginning Monday, March 17. Access to the Certified Application Counselors will be from 8 a.m. – 11 p.m. Monday through Friday and 9 a.m. – 9 p.m. next Saturday and Sunday.

Anyone who is able to enroll, please do so as soon as possible through the Health Care Marketplace link https://www.healthcare.gov/marketplace .

According to MCSO, as of March 1, the number of Oklahoman’s eligible to enroll in a marketplace plan is 78,444 and the number eligible to enroll in a market place plan with financial assistance is 41,964. The number who have selected and enrolled in a plan is 32,882.

Based on household income and dependents, a person may be eligible for health insurance coverage at no cost through Medicaid. Or, they may be eligible for new affordable health insurance options on the Health Insurance Marketplace – and financial help towards the cost of premiums may be available.

People will no longer be denied coverage because of a preexisting health condition. Some of the essential health benefits on every plan on the Health Insurance Marketplace include: Preventive care and wellness services, doctor visits, prescription drugs, hospital and emergency department care, lab services, chronic disease management and pediatric services.

What are Qualified Health Plans (QHPs)?

These are the health plans guaranteed to provide essential health benefits such as preventative care, prescription drugs and maternity care. Plans are defined by categories based on the percentage of expenses covered by the health plan. There are five levels of cost-sharing, also referred to as metal levels. These are, catastrophic, bronze, silver, gold and platinum.

How can Medical Center of Southeastern Oklahoma help me navigate this insurance marketplace?

The hospital has trained personnel, known as Certified Application Counselors, to help answer questions and guide individuals through the insurance selection and enrollment process. To get help, call 580-924-3080, ext. 1490.

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