COURTESY GET COVERED ILLINOIS
CHICAGO – Get Covered Illinois (GCI) announced a new partnership with insurance brokers and agents that will expand the state’s efforts to help educate and enroll Illinoisans in the second year of Open Enrollment under the Affordable Care Act (ACA).
The second Open Enrollment Period is a three-month window running from Nov. 15 throughFeb. 15. The GCI Producer Program will build on the successful, informal collaboration with insurance brokers and agents across the state in the first year of Open Enrollment. Brokers and agents have valuable expertise to assist individuals, families and small businesses in making the right choices for them about qualified health plans.
“Brokers and agents played a big part last year in helping to enroll more than 700,000 people across Illinois in health coverage,” said Jennifer Koehler, executive director of GCI. “In Year One, we learned that many brokers and agents were looking for more ways to collaborate with GCI, especially in marketing. Brokers have great community networks and they play an important role in helping people sign up early and get the coverage they need.”
Approximately 800,000 people have gained access to health coverage as a result of GCI’s aggressive education and enrollment efforts. This includes 217,000 people who enrolled in private health plans through the Illinois Health Insurance Marketplace in Year One, and an additional 65,000 who enrolled in a plan in the first month of Open Enrollment for Year Two. In addition, 536,000 people have gained coverage through the expanded Medicaid program.
“On behalf of the three producer associations I represent, the Independent Insurance Agents of Illinois, the Illinois State Association of Health Underwriters and the National Association of Insurance & Financial Advisors, we appreciate the continuing outreach by Get Covered Illinois to assist producers in enrolling their clients through the Marketplace,” said Phil Lackman who represents all three organizations in a government relations capacity. “Illinois consumers look to their trusted benefits advisors for guidance and counsel in working through the complexities of the ACA, and producers themselves need clarity from state and federal governments in order to do so.”
The GCI Producer Program offers two levels of engagement:
- The first level, (1) the Producer Partner level, offers key benefits like being featured on our website producer tool, networking events and access to important policy updates.
- The second level, (2) the Producer Ambassador level, is for brokers/agents who are looking for a deeper level of engagement with GCI, which will come with level one benefits plus a co-marketing partnership offering a 50/50 match for local print advertising (not to exceed $25,000 per ambassador).
- More than 100 brokers and agents are participating as Producer Partners and 12 brokers and agents across the state have been accepted as Producer Ambasadors.
To assist residents looking to enroll or re-enroll in health coverage, GCI has established a network of hundreds of bilingual Navigators, agents and brokers around the state to provide free help in-person and by phone.
Illinois residents can call the GCI Help Desk at (866) 311-1119 or visitwww.GetCoveredIllinois.gov to find free, in-person help with an agent, broker or Navigator in their area to find a plan that best meets their needs and their budget.
Uninsured residents must enroll in a plan by the deadline of Feb. 15 to gain coverage startingMarch 1, 2015. Residents who enrolled last year are encouraged to take advantage of the free, in-person help during Open Enrollment to review new health coverage options and the financial help available before opting to renew their current plan.
The number of Qualified Health Plans (QHPs) offered under the ACA has more than doubled from 165 plans offered in 2014 to more than 400 plans being offered in 2015.
Visit GetCoveredIllinois.gov/events for more information about enrollment events around the state. For additional information about your health coverage options, or to make an appointment for in-person assistance, call (866) 311-1119.