Enrollment on wheels: MetroHealth brings Obamacare enrollment help to patients

Despite President Donald Trump and Republican leaders' best efforts, the Affordable Care Act is still here.

Open enrollment starts November 1st and runs through December 15th. That's a much smaller window than in years past, so the folks at MetroHealth System are taking open enrollment to the community.

"When we pull this vehicle into places, they're very interested to see what's inside," said Amy Piatak, the financial counseling associate director at MetroHealth System. 

The Metro Health enrollment outreach unit drives all over the city looking for people who need help enrolling in Medicare, Medicaid and now that it's open enrollment, Obamacare.

"There are times that individuals can walk out of the RV with coverage, we will set them up with provider visits and follow ups," said Piatak.

Piatak says they've been seeing a steady increase of residents signing up since the affordable care act was introduced in 2014.

"Each year it grows a little bit as we have seen the volumes, so we are very interested to see how this year looks to us," she said.

But 2018 could prove challenging. Ohio could see an average of a 21 percent increase in premiums from 2017, according to the Ohio Department of Insurance.

The agency also says the number of insurance companies under the ACA has dwindled. In 2016, there were 17 insurers in Ohio, but by 2018 that number will be chopped in half.

Despite the challenges, Piatak says her mission continues.

"We see a very high population of under insured as being a public hospital, so our goal is to get them the coverage that best suits their need to make sure that they get the care that they need," she said.

If you want to know when MetroHealth's Enrollment Outreach Unit will be in your area, click here.

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