AUGUSTA, Maine, October 15 – Govt. Janet Mills, D-Maine, issued the following press release:
Joined by Administrator of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) Chiquita Brooks-LaSure, governor Janet Mills today applauded the recent CMS endorsement from Maine State Based Health insurance market – CoverME.gov – and announced that from Friday, October 15, 2021 Maine residents can shop for plans using a new tool called “Compare Plans.”
The “Plan Compare” tool was built on the basis of feedback from consumers in the field, and it allows Maine for people to more easily browse and compare packages based on monthly premiums. Starting on Friday, Maine people can visit CoverME.gov and use Plan Compare to shop for plans without having to register or enter any personal information. When open registration begins on November 1, 2021, consumers can then use the tool to help them sign up for a plan.
Governor Mills also announced that the Maine Department of Health and Health Insurance Market Human Services Office (DHHS) will increase funding for mariners to expand outreach and registration activities during the next open registration period. The ministry will increase funding for a state-wide consumer hotline, as well as training and technical assistance for $ 350,000 in 2022 from $ 200,000 in 2021.
Earlier this month, Governor Mills announced that CMS has approved the state’s request to execute a state-based contract. A state-based marketplace enables Maine to customize the marketplace so that it adapts Maine to people’s needs and to tailor awareness and resources to uninsured communities. Maine was one of three states recently approved by CMS to operate its own market.
“Our state-based marketplace puts Maine in the driver’s seat when it comes to health care, âGovernor said Janet Mills. âFrom extending our open enrollment period to creating a special pregnancy-related enrollment period to developing a new tool to easily compare health plans, creating our own marketplace gives us greater flexibility to customize and better meet the needs of Maine people so that we can improve access to affordable, quality coverage. I thank CMS for its approval and encourage Maine people to visit CoverME.gov to shop for plans and register from November, 1st. “
“The Biden-Harris administration is committed to working with states to ensure that everyone can get the coverage and care they need and builds on the success of the Affordable Care Act and the American Rescue Plan, âsaid the administrator by CMS Chiquita Brooks-LaSure. âCMS applauds states, as Maine, who are taking important steps to expand access to comprehensive health care. “
âThe new state-based marketplace allows us to deliver a consumer-oriented offering, Maineto find and buy affordable private health insurance, âsaid Commissioner Lambrew. âThe state market place is at the heart of The administration of the mills work to improve access to affordable health care.
In addition to expanding access to MaineCare to over 85,000 Maine people, Governor Mills’ Made for Maine Health Coverage Act – which was passed by the Legislature with a strong bipartisan majority – authorized the Maine Department of Health and Human Services manage a state-owned enterprise Health insurance market and made some of the more common medical visits less expensive, as part of a larger plan to improve private health insurance for Maine people and small businesses.
The Department has taken the first step in the transition to a state-based marketplace during the 2021 open enrollment period (from November 1, 2020 To December 15, 2020), by launching a hybrid Federal State Market, Following from Maine the use of a fully federal system since 2014.
For the open registration period 2022 and the following years, CoverME.gov will serve as from Maine fully state-based market platform. The Ministry launched the website in October 2019 as a resource for Maine people to explore affordable health insurance options. With the new state Marketplace, CoverME.gov will expand to become the official platform where Maine people can buy and subscribe to private coverage.
âWe are excited about the excellent work of the Administration in securing the approval of from Maine State-based market – one of the many stages Governor Mills took to improve access to health care in Maine,” noted Ann wolson, Executive Director of Consumers for Affordable Health Care. âMainers needing health insurance this coming year have more affordable options. Monthly premium rates have fallen for tens of thousands of Mainers. CoverME.gov is an important tool that consumers can use to sort out options and purchase the coverage they need. “
“I am satisfied Maine will provide a state-based marketplace to support people enrolling in affordable health care while being able to customize special enrollment periods to better meet the needs of citizens of Maine,” noted Patty lovell, Marketplace browser, West Maine Community Action. âThe increase in tax credits offered by the American Rescue Plan has reduced the premiums of $ 50 To $ 330 for the people I’ve helped update their healthcare plans through the Marketplace. Affordable health insurance is important to everyone, especially in these extraordinary times. “
With a state-based marketplace, Maine may set its own open registration period and, for this purpose, on the instructions of the Governor, Maine added an extra month this year January 15th rather than December 15– to give Maine more time for people to enroll in a health plan.
Moreover, among other advantages of a state-based market, Maine may make improvements to special registration periods, which are times when Maine people can purchase coverage outside of the open enrollment period. To this end, Maine offers a new special pregnancy registration period, which will allow pregnant women without Marketplace coverage to obtain health coverage outside of the open registration period.
Currently, 15 other states operate a state-based marketplace, including all others New England States except New Hampshire. The current operation from Maine The state marketplace is funded by user fees charged to health insurance companies who use the platform to sell their plans.
As in previous years, those who already have a Marketplace plan will automatically be re-enrolled in their current plan or the most similar offer from their health insurer. Consumers will receive information about the re-enrollment process directly from CoverME.gov in October. People who apply through CoverME.gov who are eligible for MaineCare will have their application sent to MaineCare for review. Eligible Maine people can sign up for MaineCare any time of the year.
Following the press conference, Governor Mills and Administrator Brooks-LaSure participated in a virtual panel discussion with Maine registration assistance organizations. These organizations, which are located throughout the state, work hand in hand with Maine people to help them consider health insurance options and purchase coverage.