New York, NY – November 1 marked the start of a new enrollment period for health insurance under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), and Planned Parenthood is helping ensure that women and families across the country have the information and tools they need to get covered during the three-month enrollment period (November 1, 2016, to January 31, 2017).
“Having insurance means that you can see the health care providers you need, when you need to, and get critical preventive care without a copay,” said Cecile Richards, president of Planned Parenthood Federation of America. “The unfortunate reality is that accidents happen, and people get sick. Insurance protects you and your family from unexpected medical bills – and if you’re worried about cost, it’s important to know that millions of Americans will get help paying for their insurance plans.”
Even for those who have looked at the options before, health insurance plans and costs change every year. A new report shows that in 2017 people purchasing insurance through HealthCare.gov will be able to choose from an average of 30 plans and 72% of people will be able to find a plan for less than $75 a month.
Throughout the enrollment period, Planned Parenthood will provide those in their communities with information and tools to sign up for affordable health insurance and choose the best plan for their needs. At least fifteen Planned Parenthood affiliates in Arizona, California, Colorado, Georgia, Illinois, Iowa, Louisiana, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, New York, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Washington, and Wyoming will be offering resources for community members and, in some locations, in-person assistance.
More than 55 million women have already benefited from the ACA by receiving access to fully covered women’s health services, thanks to the act’s preventive health benefits, which include birth control, routine well-woman exams, breast and cervical cancer screenings, and mammograms for women over 40, all without copays or other out-of-pocket expenses. A study published in Health Affairs found that women saved an estimated $1.4 billion in one year on birth control pills alone.
Since the ACA's first enrollment period, Planned Parenthood has:
Provided information about health insurance and benefits to more than 3.7 million consumers
Helped over 236,000 consumers start the enrollment process
Held over 3,600 community events across the country
Seen 1.3 million unique visitors to Planned Parenthood ACA websites, which educate visitors on enrollment and insurance
“Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, millions more women and families can get the care they need without a copay, including birth control, cancer screenings, and other lifesaving preventive services,” said Richards. “As the nation’s leading women’s health care provider and advocate, we are proud to help anyone without insurance figure out what to consider in choosing a health insurance plan, how to get help paying for it, and how to sign up.”
In addition to on-the-ground activities, Planned Parenthood’s website Planned Parenthood Health Insurance Factsprovides an overview of what the Affordable Care Act means for women, a glossary of important terms related to the law and health insurance, a calculator that helps visitors get a sense of what kind of financial help they can get, and specifics on what to consider as a woman choosing a health insurance plan. It also features a widget that allows visitors to find in-person assistance near them, and schedule an appointment online with a certified helper.
“For generations, Planned Parenthood has been providing expert women’s health care and education, and that’s not changing,” said Richards. “Whether you have health insurance or not, you can always come to Planned Parenthood for birth control, cancer screenings, and other reproductive and sexual health care services, no matter what.”
Planned Parenthood health centers provided care for 2.5 million patients annually, including providing affordable birth control information and services for 2.9 million patients, more than 270,000 Pap tests, more than 360,000 breast exams, and more than 4.2 million tests and treatments for STIs, including more than 650,000 HIV tests.
Planned Parenthood is the nation's leading provider and advocate of high-quality, affordable health care for women, men, and young people, as well as the nation's largest provider of sex education. With approximately 700 health centers across the country, Planned Parenthood organizations serve all patients with care and compassion, with respect and without judgment. Through health centers, programs in schools and communities, and online resources, Planned Parenthood is a trusted source of reliable health information that allows people to make informed health decisions. We do all this because we care passionately about helping people lead healthier lives.
Planned Parenthood Federation of America media office: 212-261-4433
November 07, 2016