Press Release: New York State Department of Health Announces New Features of 2015 NY State of Health Marketplace
New Innovative Outreach Programs Make Consumer Enrollment Process Easier and more Accessible
ALBANY, N.Y. (November 14, 2014) - The New York State Department of Health today announced that year two of the NY State of Health marketplace will introduce several new initiatives designed to make both consumer shopping easier and coverage more accessible.
“With more than 960,000 New Yorkers enrolled in the first open enrollment period, NY State of Health has proven to be an extremely successful program that is well on its way to exceeding the goal of insuring more than one million people by 2016,” said acting New York State Health Commissioner Dr. Howard Zucker. “The past year has provided us with numerous insights on how to build upon the program’s achievements in the upcoming open enrollment period.”
Last year, during its first open enrollment period, nearly one million New Yorkers enrolled in health insurance coverage through NY State of Health. Premium rates for 2015 plans will continue to be more than 50 percent lower than they were prior to the establishment of the Marketplace, with nearly 75% of the people enrolled getting financial assistance to help further lower their monthly costs.
“Greater outreach efforts will to be our primary focus as we continue to build upon our enrollment success from year one,” said Donna Frescatore, Executive Director of NY State of Health. “Giving people additional opportunities to experience the benefits of the NY State of Health marketplace with its affordability and high-quality health insurance coverage will lead to more enrollments and a healthier New York in more ways than one.”
This year’s open enrollment begins on November 15 and runs through February 15, 2015 and offers new initiatives that were spurred by the input from NY State of Health consumers, assistors and stakeholders.
Greater program accessibility
The NY State of Health continues to translate many of its informational materials to extend its reach to diverse populations across the state. For 2015, materials will continue to be available in English, Chinese, French, Haitian Creole, Italian, Korean, Russian and Spanish. Select informational materials will be available in ten new languages: Arabic, Bengali, Hindu, Japanese, Nepali, Polish, Twi, Urdu, Vietnamese, and Yiddish.
During the 2015 open enrollment period, NY State of Health will debut a Spanish version of its website, including an online application for individuals and families, an interactive calendar of events, navigation tools and new “How To” videos.
Thousands of certified assistors, navigators and brokers statewide are available during the enrollment period to assist consumers with the entire process. Last open enrollment period, the NY State of Health Customer Service Center fielded more than 1.2 million calls and assisted consumers in more than 50 languages. In-person services are also available in 48 languages.
Expanded awareness and outreach efforts
NY State of Health is offering new awareness and innovative outreach tools and materials with additional information to simplify the enrollment process and expand its reach deeper into New York communities and encourage earlier enrollments.
Earlier in October, renewal notices were sent electronically or by mail to more than 300,000 consumers who were enrolled in NY State of Health in 2014. People who do not want to change their coverage in 2015 and whose application status is unchanged from last year do not need to take any action. A short animated video on how to re-enroll is available here.
NY State of Health is also launching English and Spanish mobile campaigns that enable New Yorkers to opt in to receive enrollment information and deadline reminders on their smart phones while browsing.
A comprehensive state-wide advertising/testimonial campaign to include TV, radio, print and digital media, is scheduled to launch later this month featuring genuine people who were enrolled in last year’s program who will share their unique circumstances and tell how enrolling in coverage through the marketplace has benefited them.
NY State of Health representatives will have a presence at hundreds of New York State events throughout the year to provide information and assistance. Event information with dates and event locations for each county can be found at http://info.nystateofhealth.ny.gov/events. Consumers can also find an in-person assistor in their area by visiting the NY State of Health website or calling the NY State of Health Customer Service Center.
More healthcare Choices/Easier Shopping Tools
Consumers in many counties will have a greater number of health plan options to choose from in 2015. Plans offered in NY State of Health will continue to be available in four easy-to compare “metal” tiers (platinum, gold, silver and bronze).
To assist consumers in understanding and evaluating health plan options in the marketplace, a new “Plan and Compare” guide summarizing all available plans within each county across New York State will be available for consumers to preview before they begin their application. On November 15, a new website feature will allow consumers to shop for plans and get a personalized premium quote without having to enter personal information and complete an application.
Contact: New York State Department of Health
518 474 7354, ext. 1
About the NY State of Health Marketplace
New York opened its Health Plan marketplace, NY State of Health, on October 2013. The Marketplace’s one stop health insurance shopping experience offers high quality comprehensive plans for consumers to choose from. NY Health Marketplace is the only place where consumers can qualify to get help paying for coverage through premium discounts or tax credits. Consumers must enroll in a plan by the 15th of the month to start coverage on the first of the following month. New Yorkers who enroll on or before December 15 will begin coverage on January 1, 2015. The NY State of Health Small Business Marketplace for employers with 50 or fewer employees is open to enrollment throughout the year. For more information about the New York State of Health exchange, please visit https://nystateofhealth.ny.gov/.