HealthSource RI extends deadline for Feb. coverage to Jan. 29
HEALTHSOURCE RI announced Thursday that it would extend to Jan. 29 the deadline for individual- and family-plan enrollment for health insurance coverage beginning Feb. 1. The original deadline was Thursday, Jan. 23.
PROVIDENCE – HealthSource RI has extended to Wednesday, Jan. 29, the deadline for individual- and family-plan enrollment for health insurance coverage beginning Feb. 1.
Similar deadline extensions were granted in December and earlier this month, as the agency contended with problems associated with the national rollout of the Affordable Care Act.
In a sense, the extensions were also a result of HealthSource RI’s success. The exchange’s contact center in Providence was exceptionally busy at the time of the previous extensions, prior to the end-of-year enrollment rush for coverage beginning Jan. 1, which strained HealthSource RI’s staff and resources.
HealthSource RI spokeswoman Dara Chadwick said Thursday that the most recent extension for Feb. 1 coverage was made, in part, for the same reason.
“[This is] a courtesy to our customers who may be encountering wait times due to high volume at our contact center and to allow RIte Care parents who are new to choosing and enrolling in a plan the maximum amount of time to consider their options,” said Chadwick.
In mid-November, about 6,500 parents were told they would be removed from the rolls of RIte Care, the state-managed Medicaid program. The move was in response to the R.I. General Assembly’s decision in June to change the eligibility requirements for RIte Care, lowering the annual income cutoff from 175 percent of the federal poverty level to 133 percent of the poverty level.
In early December, the R.I. Executive Office of Health & Human Services offered to automatically enroll those losing their RIte Care coverage as of Jan. 1 in the Neighborhood Health Plan of Rhode Island VALUE plan through the exchange, and to pay for the first month of coverage.