Obamacare coverage problems? Here’s what you need to know
Nine days after health plans sold as part of the federal health law were slated to take effect, some state residents are still struggling to get their coverage set up. Here’s what you need to know about the payment deadlines, what to do if you need an insurance ID card, who to call if you’re having problems, what you can do if you need a prescription filled before you get your insurance information, and the deadlines to know if you’re still shopping for coverage.
If you signed up for private insurance through Access Health CT by Dec. 23, you will receive coverage retroactive to Jan. 1 if you pay your first month’s premium by the following dates:
Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield: Jan. 31 (as of Jan. 13; the deadline was previously earlier)
ConnectiCare Benefits: Jan. 15
HealthyCT: Jan. 17 (payments will be accepted if they are postmarked by the 17th)
If you have paid your January premium bill but have not received an ID card: Your options depend on your insurance company.
Anthem allows people to print temporary ID cards from its website. Members must log in, then, under “Resources,” select “Print Temporary ID Card.” This will open a new screen with the temporary ID card, which can be printed.
Some Anthem customers have reported that they have submitted payment by check or electronically, but have not had the money deducted from or charged to their accounts, making them unable to print ID cards. The Mirror has asked Anthem about potential payment processing issues but has not received an answer.
Anthem has provided additional information for members, including those whose payments have not been processed or who need to see a doctor but have not received an insurance ID number, here.
Unlike the other carriers, ConnectiCare mails insurance ID cards before it receives people’s payments. The payments must be made for the coverage to be activated. People who have not received an ID card can print a temporary one from the company’s website.
HealthyCT allows people who have paid their bills but not received ID cards to print temporary ID cards through its website.
If you have questions about your coverage or have not received a bill, you can call:
Customers can also email the company by clicking here. People who use that mailbox can expect an answer in two business days, according to Anthem.
ConnectiCare: 860-674-5757 or 1-800-251-7722 (TDD/TYY Services: 1-800-842-9710)
If you are eligible for Medicaid (HUSKY) and have questions, you can call the Department of Social Services at 1-855-6-CONNECT (1-855-626-6632) (TTD/TTY 1-800-842-452
If you’d like additional assistance, you can call:
The state Office of the Healthcare Advocate: 1-866-HMO-4446
In many cases, callers will be referred to their insurance carriers. But the office has been working to expedite coverage for insurance customers who need immediate medical services, such as ongoing cancer treatment or scheduled surgery.
The Connecticut Insurance Department’s consumer affairs division: 1-800-203-3447 or 860-297-3900
In many cases, callers will be referred to their insurance carriers. People can file complaints with the division, which is one way to try to get answers from an insurer. That process can take more than a week, however, so is unlikely to produce immediate answers.
If you need a prescription filled:
Some pharmacies are providing medications to patients who signed up for coverage through health insurance exchanges but have not yet received plan ID numbers from their insurers.
Walgreens said it will provide up to a month of medications at no upfront costs to people who show confirmation that they have enrolled through a state exchange, or whose eligibility can be verified by pharmacy staff. This offer runs through the end of the month.
CVS said it will help patients experiencing a temporary disruption in insurance coverage with getting a 15- or 30-day supply of medication. The offer is available “in some circumstances and based on clinical considerations,” according to the company. For patients with financial hardships, the medication might be provided “as a courtesy.” CVS’ MinuteClinics will offer similar options.
Rite Aid said that in cases where people enrolled in coverage through state exchanges but have not received plan identification numbers, pharmacy staff will help the customer verify eligibility and use their benefits. Customers must bring confirmation of their enrollment. During January, pharmacists can provide a 15- to 30-day supply of medication at no cost to people who enrolled in exchange plans but don’t have prescription benefit information available yet. Those customers might be required to pay any applicable co-payments under the terms of their coverage, according to the company.
Walmart said it will fill a supply of up to 30 days for prescriptions with no upfront cost to customers who have enrolled in coverage through state health insurance exchanges but have not yet received their plan ID information. The offer is available through the end of the month.
Still want to enroll? Here are the deadlines
If you have not signed up for private insurance through Access Health CT but wish to do so, the following deadline apply:[iframe src=”https://projects.ctmirror.org/content/2014/01/exchangeDeadline/” scrolling=”no” width=”100%” height=”265″]
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