(Oct. 1) – Rep. Beth McCann noted that with today’s opening of Connect for Health Colorado, the state’s new health care exchange, Colorado is moving forward with bipartisan solutions even as the federal government is shut down in a partisan dispute over health care.
“The window to a healthier future for Colorado opened today,” said Rep. McCann (D-Denver), who is chairwoman of the Health, Insurance & Environment Committee and vice chair of the Health Insurance Exchange Legislative Oversight Review Board. “Because our state will be healthier, it will be more productive and more prosperous.”
Rep. McCann credited the legislators who supported the 2011 bill creating the new system.
“I want to express again my thanks to Rep. Amy Stephens and the bipartisan majority that made this day possible,” Rep. McCann said. “We have a bipartisan Colorado solution to implement the Affordable Care Act.”
Rep. Stephens (R-Monument) and former Sen. Betty Boyd sponsored the bill that produced Connect for Health Colorado. Rep. Stephens and 12 other House Republicans, including then-Speaker Frank McNulty, joined House Democrats in support of the bill. The exchange also has strong business support.
Beginning today, individuals – basically all adults whose insurance is not being paid for by their employer – can go to C4HCO to compare plans, ask questions, get information on eligibility for aid programs and sign up for their 2014 health insurance plans.
The idea behind Connect for Health Colorado is simple: to create a single marketplace where insurance companies can compete for your health insurance business, driving costs down.
Individuals purchasing coverage through C4HCO may qualify for financial assistance to make their insurance premiums more affordable. For example, a family of three with an annual household income of $30,000 may qualify for more than $800 per month in premium assistance and may also be eligible for additional assistance to help cover copayments and other out-of-pocket costs.
Assistance is available to employers, too. More than 100,000 businesses in Colorado with 25 or fewer employees may receive a tax credit of up to 50 percent of the employer’s total contribution toward employee health insurance premiums.
For estimates of financial assistance and all other health exchange information, call toll free: 855-PLANS-4-YOU (855-752-6749) or go to www.connectforhealthco.com
Coupled with the expansion of Medicaid, the new health insurance marketplace will provide greater economic security for hundreds of thousands of low- and middle-income Coloradans.