January 31 will officially mark the end of the health insurance open enrollment season. Individuals that have enrolled in coverage between Jan. 16 through Jan. 31 will begin receiving benefits starting on March 1.
For those who have failed to sign up for coverage, whether through their employer or the federal marketplace, they will be subject to a fine when their 2016 taxes are filed next year. The penalty, which has gone up to $695 per adult and $347.50 per child or 2.5% of the household income, has increased in value in an effort to motivate Americans to apply for coverage. Unlike last year, there will not be a special enrollment period to help those who are uninsured enroll to avoid the fee.
Leading up to open enrollment season, there has been a wide-range of criticism regarding narrower networks, increased premiums and higher deductibles. Although these feelings may be represented in some individuals, a study released by the Kaiser Family Foundation demonstrates that majority of Americans are satisfied with their coverage.
Results of the study indicated that 61 percent of insured adults under 65 felt that their insurance coverage was excellent or good when compared to the overall cost. Additionally, 54 percent of individuals felt “very satisfied” with their selection of doctors under their current plan.
This poll may show a change in the mentality of Americans. Could it be that the public has begun to accept that health care insurance is costly or have insurance companies made the plans more affordable for the overall population? Share with us your thoughts below!