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Health Insurance Relief Available For Unemployed

July 6, 2021, 6:29 AM HST
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Hawai´i residents who have lost their jobs may have recourse to obtain more affordable health insurance.

The Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs Insurance Division released a message last week encouraging those residents to visit HealthCare.gov to see if they qualify for new financial help as part of the American Rescue Plan (ARP). Individuals may qualify if they receive, or are eligible to receive, unemployment income for at least one week in 2021.

Thousands of Hawai´i’s workers lost their jobs and health insurance because of the COVID-19 pandemic. The ARP is again lowering the cost of health insurance and providing more ways for workers across the state and the nation to obtain affordable and comprehensive healthcare coverage. 

To take advantage of this new financial help, unemployment income recipients will need to submit a new application or update their existing application between July 1 and Aug. 15, 2021. If an individual qualifies, coverage can begin as soon as August 1 and the savings will last through the end of the year.

“Hawai´i’s unemployed residents should visit HealthCare.gov to see if they can save money on their health insurance premiums and out-of-pocket costs,” said Insurance Commissioner Colin M. Hayashida. “The savings can be significant, and some individuals may even see premiums drop to zero.”

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“In fact, anyone who needs free or low-cost healthcare should visit HealthCare.gov. More people may now qualify despite previous ineligibility, and current enrollees may now qualify for even lower cost plans,” Hayashida continued. “I urge consumers to take advantage of the special enrollment period before it ends on August 15.”

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