The American Rescue Plan (ARP), which took effect in March 2021, was a federal, $1.9 trillion economic stimulus bill aimed at restarting the U.S. economy and building upon previous COVID-19 stimulus bills (passed in March and December of 2020).
While the ARP was focused on national recovery from the economic and health effects of the pandemic, a little-known provision of the bill impacted the health insurance of millions of Americans. Under the bill, individuals can receive more help paying for health insurance, and many not previously eligible for tax credits became eligible for aid. However, to access these monthly savings, those currently enrolled in a Marketplace plan needed to re-enroll (opt back in) to their plan.
Luckily, Project Access NOW has a diverse and experienced staff with the range of skills needed to complete complex projects and those requiring quick action. Staff (many of whom are bilingual in English and Spanish, Russian, or Arabic) supported re-enrollment for more than 400 individuals. Individuals and health insurance agents looking to reenroll clients were able to work with Project Access NOW staff directly.
By May 31st, 99% of program participants had re-enrolled and were now able to access significant savings on their insurance. In addition, these savings allowed the program to serve more individuals. On average, for each client re-enrolled, one additional person is able to be served by the program. By the end of the year, the update will save an average of $87 per month per client – adding up to over $36,000 per month in reduced costs!
Project Access NOW’s model, unique in the health industry, allows for the quick thinking and fluid adaptations needed to navigate the changing world of health care. Because a variety of services are unified under one organization, individuals are supported through life changes without losing access to health care or insurance, and with social supports to safely stay out of the hospital. From donated care to enrollment assistance to premium payment support and more, the PANOW communicates and collaborates across programs, increasing health system efficiency and reducing the need for a confusing web of often redundant organizations or programs.
A huge thank you to our program partners who make this program possible (as well as the clients that inspire us!):
Questions about the health care or receiving support with insurance premium payments?
Contact Premium Assistance at: (503) 345-6576 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Fact Sheet: The American Rescue Plan: Reduces Health Care Costs, Expands Access to Insurance Coverage and Addresses Health Care Disparities, U.S. Department of Health & Human Service
New, lower costs on Marketplace coverage, HealthCare.gov