By Sarah Hecht, Chicago, Illinois
As a theater artist working part-time jobs to support myself, I couldn’t afford to buy health insurance. And that didn’t worry me – I’m 32 and never had any health problems. I’ve always taken good care of myself: I do yoga, I ride a bike, and I eat well.
Honestly, I decided to sign up for insurance through the Health Insurance Marketplace because I support the goal of expanding health coverage in this country, not because I thought I’d need it. I also convinced my fiancé, Diego Báez, who is a writer and adjunct professor, to enroll.
My insurance started on Jan. 1, and it’s a good thing, too. Soon after, I started feeling ill but didn’t think too much of it. Then on Jan. 29, I was admitted to the hospital with a ruptured appendix and ended up having to stay in the hospital for 12 days.
Without my new Marketplace plan, I don’t know how I would have been able to pay the cost of my care.
I chose a basic HMO plan and qualified for a reduced premium of only $56 a month, which is very affordable for me. You, too, can find quality affordable coverage at HealthCare.gov, where 6 out of 10 uninsured Americans can get covered for $100 per month or less – some a lot less.
Check out your options and sign up for a plan at HealthCare.gov, which is working smoothly, or CuidadoDeSalud.gov, the Spanish language version.
It’s really easy to do. With side-by-side comparisons of plans, finding one that meets your needs won’t be a problem. I didn’t have any trouble, but if you need help or prefer talking to a person, you can call 1-800-318-2596 – at any time and at any hour – and in any one of 150 languages. If you want to find in-person help in your community, go to localhelp.healthcare.gov and punch in your zip code.
There’s still time, but don’t delay! Sign up today. You have only until March 31 to enroll in plan for coverage this year. Otherwise, you won’t be able to sign up until November for coverage that begins next year.
My ruptured appendix was a wakeup call – for me and Diego.
We’re getting married in September. This experience for us puts a new light on the phrase “in sickness and in health.”