President Biden introduced the Special Enrollment Period, surging a fresh and renewed enthusiasm for the thousands of Americans who still need to find health insurance. And for businesses facilitating the connections between the two, this SEP represents a huge opportunity. But is everyone really taking advantage of this Bidencare version of the ACA?
You might be wondering what’s the latest on the Bidencare and special enrollment period. We explore behind the headlines to see if the ACA 2.0 that President Biden intended is working as planned. And there may be additional opportunities for your business to leverage the surge in enrollment yet to come.
What’s All the Buzz About Bidencare?
When the Trump administration moved to remove and attempted to eliminate the ACA, funding for parts of the ACA saw significant reductions. President Biden is promising not only to reinstate those funds but also to improve the ACA in a way that more Americans can find affordable coverage. This also means working with the state-based exchanges and creating a liaison in a way that those who need coverage can find it efficiently.
Healthcare.gov is the primary Marketplace in 36 different states, and this Biden-sponsored special enrollment period is gaining traction in others, as well. The state-run exchanges are following suit with extensions for open enrollment. Many states, including California, Colorado, and Nevada, announced COVID-19-related SEPs through May 15th. Some of these SEPs are open to those who are uninsured only, and other states are offering eligibility to those who already have coverage and need to explore more affordable options.
The health insurance Marketplace is back open to thousands of people who don’t have coverage. The Affordable Care Act, once named Obamacare, is getting revitalized under the current administration. And with a new budget and renewed marketing, the latest push for health insurance enrollment includes an effort to further educate consumers about the convenience and affordability of online Marketplace plans. Some data suggests 85% of applicants will qualify for the premium tax credits. But this SEP is only going to be effective if Americans take advantage of it. And as a business within this sector, you’re likely interested in attracting those thousands of people to the Marketplace, as well.
As a reminder, the Commonwealth Fund found nearly 7.7 million people lost their employer-sponsored health plans as a result of the pandemic. Adding in the dependents of those who lost health insurance, the total was more like 14.6 million. The other dynamic contributing to so many losing coverage is timing. Struggling to pay for COBRA costs and missing the traditional open enrollment period, many Americans missed their chances to find affordable health insurance.
Educating & Inspiring the Public
Bidencare is using $50 million in advertising budgets to help get the word out about the renewed enrollment timeline. Member growth and retention in 2021 will see huge impacts if these ads can tap into the recruiting of some 30 million people who potentially are uninsured, underinsured, or skipping necessary healthcare because of coverage and costs.
The ad campaigns are airing now and promoting the opportunity for those who may be uninsured to explore their newly available and affordable options. The ad messages tell viewers they can begin first by visiting HealthCare.gov resources for enrollment details and instructions. Much of President Biden’s allocated funding also goes to hiring staff and making these resources available to Americans who are exploring their coverage options. And Bidencare specifically is forcing a review of existing health insurance plans to root out any providers that make enrolling more challenging.
This direct outreach effort, involving direct participation from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, is also available in multiple languages, hoping to bridge the communication gap for those who need coverage. The Marketplace call center is also preparing for the influx of calls with questions about enrollment and premium tax credit eligibility.
The Opportunity for Vendors & Marketplace Providers
With the push to encourage people to visit HealthCare.gov, there exists huge opportunities for those businesses and vendors serving the industry. Americans will be looking to evaluate their income levels as they relate to premium tax credit eligibility. And many are becoming more attracted to looking into their Medicare coverage options. Are your models prepared to scale with the influx of new online health insurance visitors? Can your infrastructure capitalize on the untapped customer potential? If your business’s success depends on seamlessly capitalizing on these customer needs and online demands, you’ll need to be sure to have the right solutions and strategies in place.
Many businesses are realizing that with the increased volume of traffic; there is also a need to address the increase in potential risks. More personal information will flow between software, companies, and individuals. Having world-class security means more now than ever, and yours should include a healthy identity management strategy, threat detection measures, and rigorous compliance standards.
The stability and agility of your platform are paramount now, as well. With the floodgates of new activity opening, your system’s ability to handle the load and transition without issue needs to be robust. Not implementing an agility management strategy, with regression testing or routine monitoring, can result in costly missed opportunities.
If you have looked into white label direct enrollment solutions in the past, now may be the most opportune time to take the next step. Whether you’re looking to improve the user experience with agents or further develop your customer engagement, having an Enhanced Direct Enrollment partnership right now could see huge returns.
Bidencare’s special enrollment period is open until May 15th, and some states have shortened timelines for the state-based exchanges. The ad campaigns are driving more consumers to these platforms and encouraging Americans to explore their health insurance options right now. If you need to make quick adjustments and enhancements to your security, agility, or with enrollment partners, contact Softheon today! Having one vendor partnership with our team of professionals can ensure every enrollment scenario has a solution, every line of communication is open, and every business opportunity with the latest Bidencare enrollment extension sees results.