New Online Tools Enhance Consumers’ Health Insurance Marketplace Shopping Experience

November 20, 2014

Local in-person guidance to help Arizonans #GetCovered is just a few computer or mobile phone clicks away

PHOENIX, AZ – Imagine being able to get an appointment to help you understand your health coverage options as easily as scheduling time for an oil change or checking the latest show times for a movie you want to see.

That is now a reality, as a new web- and smart phone-accessible tool designed to simplify the health coverage shopping experience is live and ready to use.

The Get Covered Connector, introduced this month as a way for consumers to find free, professional assistance to enroll in the Health Insurance Marketplace or Medicaid (Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System, or AHCCCS), is simple to use, requiring only three fields of information to search for local appointment times and locations.

While people can apply for coverage on their own at HealthCare.gov, a survey conducted by Enroll America found consumers were twice as likely to complete the application process if they had help. The Connector is frequently updated, currently offering nearly 12,000 appointments for enrollment assistance statewide.

“The Connector was developed to cut the number of steps it takes for people to explore health plans, choose one and enroll,” said Cheryl O’Donnell, Arizona state director for the Get Covered America campaign. “With an increased number of plans now on the marketplace in Arizona, the process can seem daunting for applicants, especially those who have never had to shop for coverage before. The Get Covered Connector will make it possible to quickly and easily book a time for in-person help that is convenient for them, without having to make multiple inquiries on their own to find someone close to home.”

Arizonans who do not have Internet access or do not use a computer can book a time for assistance by calling 211, where operators use the Connector to secure appointments for clients.

Additionally, the Get Covered Calculator is updated with current data for the second Open Enrollment period (OE2). Consumers enter their zip code, income, number and age of dependents and the calculator will give them a monthly range of how much they might pay for their premiums, once financial assistance has been applied. Most Arizonans are likely to qualify, as 77% of Arizonans who bought a plan on the Marketplace during the first open enrollment period early this year received financial help.

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