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Health Care Dealine Rapidly Approaching: Navigators on Standby to Help with Enrollment

Nine days and counting. That’s exactly how long you have to sign up for health care under Obamacare. If you don't choose to pay for health insurance, it will cost you anyway. There’s a penalty for missing the deadline and it will hit you at tax time, which is why area health navigators are standing by to help with enrollment.
Nine days and counting. That’s exactly how long you have to sign up for health care under Obamacare. If you don't choose to pay for health insurance, it will cost you anyway. There’s a penalty for missing the deadline and it will hit you at tax time, which is why area health navigators are standing by to help with enrollment
Individuals and families have until February 15th to sign up for health care coverage effective March1st. According to local experts, Oneida County is a very low insured area. Some say the new system is complicated but navigators say they're here to help and often times people are surprised at how much coverage they're eligible for.
"I have enrolled over 200 plus clients, you know a lot of them we've shed a few tears, we've laughed," says Sarah Sipley.
Sipley is a navigator. Her job is to help people enroll in the affordable care act through New York State Marketplace. She says the new plan gives almost everyone the opportunity for coverage.
"People have never had insurance for 30 years and they come in and they're eligible for Medicaid and it's very rewarding or they have a pre-existing condition and when they come in they’re eligible for insurance and now with that pre-existing condition they can be seen," said Sipley.
Some other important enrollment dates to keep in the back of your mind:
Small business employers and employees must sign up by February 28th for coverage beginning April 1st, March 31st is the last day to enroll for health insurance to avoid possible tax penalties, and Medicaid and Child Health Plus enrollment is all year long.
Affordable Care Act navigators say people who have never had insurance before are the most reluctant to enroll.
"I’ve never had insurance before how do i go through this process, if we can help alleviate any of those concerns, help make the process easier, that's why we're here,” says Brian Van Benschoten, Patient Navigator.
If you need any help with enrollment and applications, the Access Care and Resource (ACR) Health in Utica has navigators available by appointment. You can call 800-475-2430.

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