“In Colorado, we share the same concerns the President expressed [Thursday] about cancelled health insurance policies. The Division of Insurance remains committed to providing access to coverage and consumer choice to Coloradoans,” Salazar said in the release. ”In the coming days and weeks we will work closely with insurance carriers in Colorado regarding any changes that need to be made as a result of the President’s comments. We will also work with consumers to alert them of any possible changes.”
Many carriers have already offered their members the choice of early renewal, allowing a current plan to carry into 2014. However, some carriers have chosen not to offer this option, she said.
Since April of this year, the Division of Insurance has issued bulletins on what health insurance carriers can and can’t do in Colorado regarding existing plans, providing guidance on what information must be included in letters to their members. Insurance carriers have also been required to make consumers aware of other options such as the possibility of buying insurance with another carrier, and shopping on Connect for Health Colorado, Colorado’s health exchange.
“While early renewal may be an option for some, we want to emphasize that anyone choosing that option will not have a health plan with the coverage and protections required by the Affordable Care Act (ACA). In the short term, it may be a reasonable choice, but it is important for people to understand some key facts about early renewal,” Salazar said in the release.
Individuals cannot renew a plan, unless the carrier offers such renewals. Not all health insurance carriers have offered early renewals to members, as some carriers have eliminated plans for 2014. Therefore, people without coverage or with different coverage cannot buy an early renewal plan.
Whether or not members are offered early renewal, all consumers can visit Connect for Health Colorado at www.connectforhealthco.com and shop and compare plans that fit their health and financial needs.
“We want people in Colorado to know that the Division of Insurance is a resource. Anyone with questions about any information provided by an insurance company can call us. The Division has trained experts ready to answer consumers’ health insurance questions and provide easy-to-understand information,” Salazar said.
For more information, call 800-930-3745.