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ACAP to Assist Local Residents Connect to the Marketplace

Aroostook County Action Program (ACAP) provides free services to help connect individuals and families to health insurance through the Marketplace. To take advantage of these increased savings and decreased expenses, consumers who decide on enrolling in Marketplace coverage through Healthcare.gov should do so beginning April 1, 2021. ACAP’s Healthcare Navigator Stanley Targonski advises, “With the passage of the American Rescue Plan, I recommend ALL currently enrolled through the Marketplace for health insurance call to schedule an appointment for after April 1, 2021 to update their Marketplace application. They can then review their plan options during this 2021 Special Enrollment Period because they may be able to choose a plan with lower out-of-pocket costs for the same or less money that they are currently paying.” 


 In response to financial hardships accrued during the COVID-19 pandemic, President Biden signed legislation titled the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARP) into law on March 11, 2021.  The ARP succeeds in making significant improvements in access to and affordability of health coverage through the Marketplace. These improvements are made possible by increasing eligibility for financial assistance to help pay for healthcare. 


The new legislation (ARP) will offer favorable premiums to a majority of those who already have a Marketplace health plan. Furthermore, an expansion of availability to financial assistance for more consumers will also be included. To the many who purchase their own insurance plans through the Marketplace, they too will also have the opportunity to be granted an increase in tax credits to further diminish their premium costs. As a result of having access to these credits, the majority of individuals across all household income levels will see lower plans available for their purchase and protection. 


On average, premium savings will account for $50 per person per month, or by $85 per policy per month! There will also be plans available for $10 or less/month to four out of five enrollees after premium tax credits, with still half of enrollees being able to purchase a Silver plan for $10 or less. Regarding the premium tax credits revision, individuals and families could be eligible for a temporary increase this year, paying nothing more than 8.5% of their household income towards the cost of the benchmark plan or a less expensive plan.  


ACAP is encouraging anyone currently enrolled in the Marketplace, as well as anyone without health care coverage, to contact Targonski for more information or to discuss individualized health plan options.   Targonski can be reached at 207-554-4158 or stargonski@acap-me.org.  These services are provided at no charge by ACAP in an effort to better serve our community and increase access to healthcare.