Press Release: NY State of Health Enrollment Continues to Surge as More New Yorkers Sign Up for Low-Cost Coverage Following the American Rescue Plan and Enhancements Made to New York’s Essential Plan

New Data Outline How the American Rescue Plan Is Driving Down Costs and Helping More New Yorkers Get Health Insurance 


ALBANY, N.Y. (September 14, 2021)  NY State of Health, the state’s official health plan Marketplace, today released a status report on the implementation of both the American Rescue Plan Act and 2021 enhancements to New York’s Essential Plan that increase the affordability and accessibility of Marketplace coverage.  NY State of Health is issuing this report and will regularly report enrollment updates, consistent with the spirt of Governor Hochul’s call for increased transparency throughout state government. This new report, Health Insurance Coverage Update, shows that as of August 31more than 6.3 million individuals—or one in three New Yorkers—are enrolled in health coverage through the Marketplace Enrollment has increased across all marketplace programs since April 2021 when the state began implementing these changes.  The surge in enrollment highlights how New Yorkers across the state and at all income levels are benefitting from these recent federal and state actions. 


“These data show the important role of NY State of Health in the lives of millions of New Yorkers. The Marketplace has been critical during the public health emergency in ensuring New Yorkers can easily access affordable coverage and do not experience coverage gaps,” said Acting NY State of Health Executive Director Danielle Holahan.  “We encourage New Yorkers who need health insurance to apply today and let us find a health plan that works for you.” 


The NY State of Health’s Health Insurance Coverage Update provides examples of the impact of federal and state health policy changes on individuals across New York StateThe American Rescue Plan, which was signed into law on March 11, 2021, increases the amount of financial help available to consumers and extends tax credits to higher income New Yorkers for the first timesignificantly lowering the monthly premium cost of Qualified Health Plans available through NY State of Health More than 40,000 New Yorkers have enrolled in health coverage with this new financial assistance since April 2021 


New Yorkers are also benefitting from several state actions that enhance Essential Plan coverage and ease access to public coverage.  The SFY 2021 Enacted Budget included several enhancements that make Essential Plan coverage more affordable and expand covered benefits.  NY State of Health now offers all eligible New Yorkers Essential Plan coverage with no monthly premium, no annual deductible, and dental and vision coverage for all enrollees at no extra cost.  The Essential Plan has always included comprehensive benefits, free preventive care, and low copayments.  Additionally, the State has adopted all available federal options to ensure that New Yorkers can easily access critical comprehensive health coverage during the ongoing public health emergency.  


As detailed in the report: 

  • Between March 2020 and August 2021, an additional 1.4 million people enrolled in health coverage through NY State of Health. 
  • More than 40,000 new consumers have enrolled in Qualified Health Plan coverage after the American Rescue Plan’s increased financial assistance became available in April 2021. 
  • The average tax credit available to lower the cost of Qualified Health Plan coverage increased by $100 per month – from $326 per month to $430 per month—saving consumers, on average, over $1,200 per year. 
  • One-third of Qualified Health Plan enrollees (or nearly 72,000 people) pay less than $100 per month for their premium. 
  • A record 914,000 individuals are enrolled in the Essential Plan as of August 2021. 
  • Since the June 2021 elimination of the Essential Plan monthly premium and increased benefits, overall program enrollment has increased by over 21,000.  Of these new enrollees, more than 9,000 would have previously been required to pay a premium. 
  • Sixty-one percent of all NY State of Health enrollees are below age 35.  


Enrollment for 2021 coverage through NY State of Health continues through the end of this year.   This differs from the federal Health Insurance Marketplace, which ended its 2021 special enrollment period on August 15.  New Yorkers who need health coverage can apply online at, by phone at 1-855-355-5777, or by connecting with a free enrollment assistor.  


The September 2021 Health Insurance Coverage Update is available at Going forward, NY State of Health will post monthly Essential Plan enrollment data and quarterly Qualified Health Plan enrollment data on this page.  


To learn more about the American Rescue Plan, please visit 


To learn more about the Essential Plan, please visit 








Contact: New York State Department of Health 

518-474-2043 x. 2 


About NY State of Health 

New York opened its health plan Marketplace, NY State of Health, in October 2013.  The Marketplace’s one stop health insurance shopping experience offers high quality comprehensive health plans.  NY State of Health is the only place where consumers can qualify to get help paying for coverage through premium discounts or tax credits.  Eligible New Yorkers can also enroll in Medicaid, Child Health Plus and the Essential Plan through the Marketplace all year.  For more information about the NY State of Health Marketplace, please visit, call Customer Service at 1-855-355-5777, (TTY: 1-800-662-1220), or find an enrollment assistor. 


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