Affordable Care Act (ACA) coverage, popularly known as Obamacare, is now more affordable than ever thanks to expanded tax credits, Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Xavier Becerra announced Wednesday.
That day, Becerra marked the first day of the 2024 ACA open enrollment period, and this time he did so from the Legal Aid Justice Center located in Arlington, Virginia. There she joined the organization Protect Our Care, to spearhead the event called ENROLL Virginia!
In his inaugural address, the Secretary of Health encouraged Americans to join the ACA program, “for affordable, quality coverage,” during newly open enrollment for next year.
He recalled that in the previous period that began last year, a record number of 16.3 million people registered through the ACA markets, with around 3.6 million people registering for the first time. Even higher numbers are possible this year, experts say, because, among other factors, attractive subsidies first approved during the height of the COVID pandemic remain available, and some states have increased financial aid.
Becerra noted that the Biden-Harris administration expanded ACA premium tax credits through the Inflation Reduction Act and made historic investments in the Navigator program, among other advances.
Together, he said, these changes have helped expand access to quality, affordable coverage and increase the number of African Americans and Hispanics who already have health coverage, “which is essential to reducing racial disparities in economic outcomes.” and health.”
Likewise, Becerra explained that by extending tax credits until 2025 to make coverage more affordable, “the premiums that millions of people had to pay were eliminated or reduced.”
“Now, 80 percent of people can find coverage through the marketplace for $10 or less. “These tax credits put money back in the pockets of Americans, who from now on will not have to choose between life-saving health care and putting food on the table or paying rent,” she said.
- To enroll, consumers can go online, call, or seek help from a broker or other assistant to learn their coverage options for 2024, calculate their potential subsidies, or change plans.
- In most states, open enrollment lasts until January 15, although some have different deadline periods.
- The one in California, for example, is longer and is open until January 31, but the one in Idaho runs from October 15 to December 15.
- In most states, enrollment must be completed by December 15 to get coverage that begins January 1.