605,000. 22.4 percent. Whichever way you look at it, more than one in five Nevadans is uninsured. But thanks to our state’s implementation of the Affordable Care Act (more commonly and happily known as “Obamacare”), that’s about to change.
Nevadans can now purchase affordable medical coverage throughNevada Health Link, the insurance exchange established by the State of Nevada this year. Nevada, guided by the federal law, has also instituted a set of essential benefits every insurance plan must offer at no additional cost. After decades in which medical bills plunged millions of Americans into bankruptcies, this is progress.
Here at Ramirez Group, we’re excited to have been selected by the State to help reach the 118,000 Nevadans they project to enroll in the program’s first year. As the only statewide agency chosen for this undertaking, our goal is to make sure every Nevadan can easily access affordable health insurance. To that end, we’ve hired 35 certified Exchange Enrollment Facilitators (EEFs) throughout Nevada who assist individuals and families apply to enroll in the Health Link for free. Our office hours have been extended to accommodate walk-ins, appointments and calls. And our representatives are attending fairs, town halls and other events every week to inform the public about Nevada Health Link.
So here’s the 411: Enrollment began on October 1st of this year and will continue through March 31st, 2014. Any individual lawfully present in the country and residing in the state (and not incarcerated) can apply, so long as they do not currently have access to affordable insurance. A single streamlined application, hosted online, helps applicants determine their eligibility for federal tax credits and subsidies, compare plans at four different levels and purchase insurance from four different insurance carriers. Applicants may be asked to provide proof of identity, proof of income and proof of residency, among other documents. But the best part? The Affordable Care Act mandates every insurance provider to meet Minimum Essential Coverage in every Qualified Health Plan. These rights and protections include:
- No more co-pays for preventive service
- No more lifetime or annual caps
- No more denials of coverage or higher rates for people with pre-existing conditions
- Free childhood immunizations
- And many other benefits previously unavailable to most Americans
If you’re looking to apply for Nevada Health Link: Ramirez Group’s downtown office at 531 South 7th Street (corner of Bonneville & 7th) is now open from 8 am to 8 pm Mondays through Fridays, and 9 am through 3 pm on Saturdays. To schedule an appointment or get further information, call our office at (702) 530-5249. Our representatives also speak Spanish. We have Enrollment Assisters stationed at every Nevada Health Center, Nevada JobConnect office and UMC clinic in Southern Nevada. For details on where to find the Enrollment Assister nearest you, check our map for days, hours and locations. If you’re applying through Nevada Health Link on your own but run into a problem or have questions, you can call the NHL hotline at 1-855-768-5463 (1-855-7-NVLINK) or email them at firstname.lastname@example.org.