Anthem, Cigna and Bright Health will continue to offer health insurance in Colorado for 2018; however, they will be discontinuing certain health plans. This change will affect many insureds and they will have to choose a new health plan for 2018!
Some insureds may have already received the Notice of Plan Discontinuation from Anthem and Cigna. As the letter explains you will be able to shop for a new plan during the open enrollment period that starts November 1, 2017.
The information the insurance carriers have shared so far about the plans being discontinued is:
- Anthem Pathway plans are still available, they have just discontinued certain plan styles.
- Cigna has discontinued all Vantage network plans, but still has the Connect network for 2018, although this network has differences from the previous network. Cigna also discontinued certain 2017 Connect network plans.
- Bright Health has made a change in the off-exchange plans only. The clients who purchased plans directly in 2017 just need to make an active election into a similar 2018 plan.
What you need to Know
Your health insurance plan will remain active until December 31, 2017, as long as premium payments remain current and eligibility requirements are met. You will want to continue to make your premium payments as usual. Please know that a new regulation passed this year allows an insurance company to require back payment if a 2018 policy is applied for and all 2017 payments have not been received.
**If you purchased your current health insurance plan through the Colorado Marketplace please see the section “Are you a Colorado Connect for Health member?” below for additional information.
You will need to save the discontinuation notice from the insurance carrier. You may be required to provide a copy of the letter when submitting your application for a new health plan for 2018.
Each health insurance company has unique provider networks and prescription drug coverage. Therefore, we encourage you to verify that you will have access to your physicians and coverage for any prescription medications you may need. Due to a shorter open enrollment period, we recommend that you do your research prior to selecting a new plan. Please feel free to use MLJ’s search tool to assist you.
MLJ’s Sales Specialists are working as diligently as possible to be fully educated on the new 2018 plans by the start of the open enrollment of November 1, 2017. Our agents will be assessing the new plan options based on clients’ needs to assist in finding the right plan.
We, at MLJ Insurance Services, do a vigorous outreach program including newsletters, personal emails and phone calls as we get closer to the time we can actively assist our clients. In addition, we have specific reminders on each client account so that we can address their concerns.
When we know that we have the 2018 information available, our office sets up appointments for a one-on-one guidance with one of our team members. If you want us to reach out feel free to contact us and we will contact you when we are ready for the 2018 enrollment period. During your phone appointment, a licensed agent will help you with the selection process of your new plan and assist with your enrollment completion for January 1st, 2018.
Are you a Colorado Connect for Health Member?
If you purchased your current health plan through the Colorado marketplace, there are few items to keep in mind:
- Please verify that you are able to access your online account with Connect for Health prior to your phone appointment with our agents.
- You will be able choose a new plan for 2018 during open enrollment.
- If you applied for financial assistance you may be required to do a re-determination for the 2018 tax credit amount.
- You will want to notify Connect for Health of any changes in your household that could affect your financial assistance.
- Connect for Health has informed us that the system for determinations and enrollments is scheduled to be ready as late as 10/30. Please know that anything done in your account prior to this could affect your current eligibility for the remainder of 2017.
MLJ will be informing current clients when the Connect for Health system is ready for the 2018 determinations.
If you are an insured being affected by the plan discontinuation, you must take action to choose a new plan for 2018:
- MLJ current clients, we will be reaching out soon to assist you with the new plan selection for the upcoming year.
- If you are not a client and wish to learn more about our insurance services, give us a call at 303-667-7123 ext. 1 or contact us via email.