EUGENE, Ore. — Anyone who wants to have health insurance coverage by January 1st has until Wednesday, December 4th to apply through Cover Oregon.
For months cover oregon has been spreading the word about the state’s new health coverage market place, and the first deadline is fast approaching.
“The deadline tomorrow (December 4th) is for people that want to have their health insurance coverage start January 1st. By tomorrow they either need to have faxed in or have an application post marked or have it submitted online,” says Kate Wheeler, spokesperson for White Bird Clinic in Eugene.
Once your application is in, you’ll receive a packet in the mail from Cover Oregon which will detail your options for plans. That enrollment process must be completed by December 15th.
For those who qualify for the Oregon Health Plan, the process is a little different.
“if you qualify for Oregon Health Plan when you get that packet back you don’t have to do anything else it will explain your benefits and you’re done then because you’re not buying anything,” Wheeler says.
Lane County Public Health spokesperson Jason Davis says it’s important for everyone to hit the deadline, whether or not you have a pre-existing health condition.
“If you’ve ever been caught without insurance in a complex health situation you know how expensive it can be. And by hitting that deadline you’re insured of the insurance on January 1.”
He says if you’re intimidated by the process, don’t be.
“If you’ve ever done your taxes or if you’ve ever signed up for car insurance this isn’t beyond you. It’s a really simple process. Have your financial information available that will be important in the process and you’re medical history to some extent as well.”
If you do miss the Wednesday deadline, you can still apply for coverage.
It will just begin a month later, on February 1st.