Gem State Roundup

Idaho’s insurance exchange is now open, with 2 new insurers to choose from

By: - November 1, 2021 3:49 am
Woman consults with doctor during telehealth appointment

A woman consults with her doctor during an online telehealth appointment from her laptop. (Marko Gerber/Getty Images)

Idaho’s health insurance exchange, Your Health Idaho, opens Nov. 1 with a new slate of plans that qualify for subsidies.

Idahoans can sign up for health insurance plans through the exchange at yourhealthidaho.org, or browse anonymously to see what’s available.

The deadline to sign up is Dec. 15.

“Every year we encourage Idahoans to begin the process as early as possible. This year that is especially true,” Your Health Idaho Executive Director Pat Kelly said in a news release. “While we have expanded our customer support channels with new online and chat options, Your Health Idaho is not immune to the current labor shortages and customers could see longer wait times with the increased demand.”

Anyone who isn’t insured through an employer, and doesn’t qualify for Medicaid or Medicare, can get insurance through the exchange. While the insurance coverage itself is provided by private insurers, the Affordable Care Act created subsidies to help cover premiums for exchange-based plans.

Your Health Idaho’s website allows users to anonymously enter their income and a few other basic facts, to calculate how much they would pay in monthly premiums for each plan available. The exchange includes medical and dental insurance.

Two new insurers join the exchange for the 2022 coverage year: Utah-based EMI Health and Molina Healthcare of Idaho, which has administered plans for Idaho Medicaid. Blue Cross of Idaho, Mountain Health CO-OP, PacificSource Health Plans, Regence BlueShield of Idaho and SelectHealth will return to the exchange for 2022.

“Not only do we have two new insurance carriers and a record number of plans, but Idahoans are also seeing more savings than ever before thanks to the enhanced subsidies that are only available through Your Health Idaho,” Kelly said in the release.

The enhanced subsidies became available in March, allowing higher income families to buy plans on the exchange. The subsidy, which “acts like an instant discount,” would allow a family of four in Ada County with an annual income of $85,000 to pay $0 for a health insurance plan, the news release said.

“Likewise, a married couple in their 50s from Bonneville County making $55,000 could get covered with a mid-level plan for less than $300 per month,” it said.

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Audrey Dutton
Audrey Dutton

Audrey Dutton, senior investigative reporter, joined the Idaho Capital Sun after 10 years at the Idaho Statesman. Her favorite topics to cover include health care, business, consumer protection issues and white collar crime. Dutton hails from Twin Falls. She attended college at Hamline University in St. Paul, Minnesota, and received a master's degree in journalism from Columbia University in New York City. Before coming home to Idaho, Dutton worked as a journalist in Minnesota, New York, Maryland and Washington, D.C. Dutton's work has earned dozens of state, regional and national awards for investigative reporting, health care and business reporting, radio journalism, data visualization and much more.

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