Lynn Abbott: Sign up for health insurance |

Lynn Abbott: Sign up for health insurance

Shopping for health insurance is about as much fun as picking dog hair off your black fleece, but right now, it’s essential to make health insurance your top priority.

Here in Colorado, we have two deadlines to consider. If you want insurance coverage to start on Jan. 1, 2018, you must sign up by Dec. 15. If you are comfortable with having coverage start on Feb. 1, you have until Jan. 12, 2018, to register.

If you are buying coverage on the healthcare marketplace, the law provides two types of financial help:

  1. For a person with an income of $30,000 or less, the federal government pays cost-sharing reduction subsidies to insurers to shrink deductibles and copayments, providing the person uses the Silver Plan.
  2. A person with an income of $48,000 or less can qualify for tax credits to help pay for premiums. The amount of the premium subsidy is based on income and the cost of the Silver Plan.

After open enrollment closes on Jan. 12, 2018, the only chance to enroll for 2018 is if you have a certain life event such as getting married, having a baby or losing other health coverage, which would make you eligible for special enrollment.

If this all sounds confusing and complicated, it is. However, we are lucky here in Routt County. You can get excellent help with all your questions at either of these two numbers:

  1. Northwest Colorado Health at 970-871-7330 or
  2. UC Health Yampa Valley Medical Center at 970-879-1322.

Please don’t miss this chance to lock in your health insurance for all of 2018.

Lynn Abbott

Steamboat Springs

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