HARLINGEN – Valley Baptist Medical Center-Harlingen will hold a free event to help Valley residents enroll in health insurance plans under the Affordable Care Act this Saturday, January 9, and next Saturday, Jan. 16, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day in the East Tower of the hospital off Treasure Hills Boulevard (in the Outpatient Registration area, on the first floor of the hospital).
During the event, “certified application counselors“ will be available to answer questions and help residents enroll for health insurance, using on-site computers. In addition, representatives of the “Enroll America“ organization will be available to answer questions.
Those interested in en-rolling on Saturday should bring their ID’s (self and family members, if applicable), social security number, proof of income, and proof of residence. Those enrolling will also need to be able to provide the names and mailing addresses for each member of the household applying for insurance, names of employers, and policy numbers of current insurance plans if applicable.
Residents are welcome to come for information and/or for enrollment. Residents will also be able to make appointments for help with enrollment with certified application counselors for other days and times, should they prefer.
Deadline for enrollment in a health insurance plan is January 31, 2016. With federal law now requiring health insurance, those who qualify but choose not to enroll may face pay a tax penalty of $695 or more.
“We believe that for most families, the best option is to learn about the financial assistance that is available and to enroll in a plan that meets their needs rather than choosing to get by without insurance and risk having to pay a fee,“ said Teri Retana, Assistant Vice President for Marketing and Communications for Valley Baptist. “Those who cannot afford health insurance coverage may qualify for an exemption to have the fee waived. Our certified application counselors can help you get the answers you need.“
The “Enroll Rio Grande Valley“ event is part of Valley Baptist Health System’s “Path to Health“ initiative, a community education and outreach program to raise awareness and understanding of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), and to help educate uninsured residents on steps they can take to secure affordable health-care coverage.