Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that the Special Enrollment Period for uninsured New Yorkers will be extended for another 30 days, through August 15, 2020, as the State continues to provide supportive services during the COVID-19 public health crisis. New Yorkers can apply for coverage through NY State of Health, New York State’s health insurance marketplace, or directly through insurers.
“During these difficult and unprecedented times, access to quality, affordable health care is critically important to New Yorkers’ well-being,” Governor Cuomo said. “While we’re continuing to move in the right direction, we know we’re not out of the woods yet and by extending the open enrollment period we’re making sure New Yorkers who need affordable health care coverage can get it and help keep themselves and their families safe.”
NY State of Health Executive Director, Donna Frescatore said, “At this unprecedented time in our state and nation’s history, we want to remind New Yorkers that NY State of Health is here as a safety net. Individuals can find and enroll in affordable, comprehensive health insurance coverage, and our Customer Service Center and enrollment assistors are available to help with this process.”
Superintendent of Financial Services Linda A. Lacewell said, “New York bent the curve but it remains critically important for all New Yorkers to have access to quality and affordable commercial health insurance. This special enrollment period extension is one of the many ways New York is continuing to work together with the commercial health industry to serve the needs of vulnerable New Yorkers. DFS is proud to be a part of this effort to keep New Yorkers healthy and safe.”
NY State of Health, together with the State Department of Financial Services and New York State insurers, are taking this action in light of the COVID-19 public health emergency so that individuals do not avoid seeking testing or medical care for fear of cost. Individuals who have lost employer coverage must apply within 60 days of losing that coverage and individuals who have lost income may be eligible for Medicaid, the Essential Plan, Child Health Plus, or subsidized Qualified Health Plans.
Individuals who enroll in Qualified Health Plans through NY State of Health or directly through insurers by August 15, 2020 will have a choice of coverage start date either August 1 or September 1, 2020. Individuals who are eligible for other NY State of Health programs – Medicaid, Essential Plan and Child Health Plus – can enroll year-round. Finally, as directed by Governor Cuomo, all New York insurers have waived cost sharing for COVID-19 testing.
As always, consumers can apply for coverage through NY State of Health online at nystateofhealth.ny.gov, by phone at 1-855-355-5777, and by connecting with a free enrollment assistor.