Monday, October 16, 2017

Affordable Care Act and Health Insurance Enrollment 2017 - What Mpowerment Projects Can Do.

Everyone needs access to affordable health care, especially young adult bisexual and gay men. 

Young bisexual and gay men's lives are in transition. There is a lot going on. Moving out, being independent, finding a job and/or going to a University or Community College.  Why is it important to think about preventative health care?  Yes, well gay men are at increased risk for certain chronic diseases and mental health problems. HIV infections are also increasing among young adult gay and bisexual men.

Think about it, nobody should go broke because they become ill, need medications or break an arm. Let's make it a goal to get more young men enrolled in health insurance. 

Gains have been made the last few years, the uninsured rate for low and middle-income LGBTQ people has dropped by an overwhelming 35% since 2014, and more individual have access to medically necessary services they need, from life-saving HIV medications to transition-related care. 

But this progress is at risk!  This year the enrollment period has been cut in half from 90 days to only 45 days; enrollment advertising budget has been slashed by 90%; funds for in-person outreach and enrollment is down by 40%!  This will be a hardest year ever to make sure that LGBTQ people get the coverage they need and know their rights.

That's why your help is needed!


Scroll down for the following information:

  • Important Open Enrollment Deadlines 2017
  • Key Dates
  • Articles of interest / Articles to discuss with your participants.
  • Sample Social Media Posts For Your Mpowerment Project
  • Additional Resources.


The upcoming open enrollment period begins on November 1 and ends on December 15, 2017 (in states using
  1. The enrollment deadline is December 15th (not January 31st as in recent years).
  2. You can still qualify for financial help to make premiums and out-of-pocket costs more affordable.
  3. You can still expect to be treated fairly and projected from discrimination

Mpowerment Long Island NYC | NY

Important Open Enrollment Deadlines 2017

  • November 1, 2017Open Enrollment 2017 starts. This is the first day you can enroll, re-enroll, or change health plans for 2017.
  • December 15, 2017You must enroll in or change health plans by this date for your health plan to start January 1, 2018. Last day to enroll in or change a 2017 health plan. After this date, you can enroll or change plans only if you qualify for a Special Enrollment Period.
  • January 1, 20182017 insurance starts if you enrolled or changed plans by December 15.
Find someone nearby to help you to apply. Click me.

Save these dates...participate!
December 15th - Deadline for coverage that starts January 1st, 2018

We need your help to keep things moving in the right direction for young adults. What can your Mpowerment Project do to encourage enrollment in the Affordable Care Act/Obamacare?  Mpowerment Projects (MP) can bring awareness and information about enrolling in health insurance coverage to their participants. Let these helpful sites guide you.

The Affordable Care Act helps young adult gay and bisexual men living with HIV. Here are some of the many ways that Obamacare helps everyone living with HIV.  

The Q Austin | Mpowerment Texas
Mpowerment events: Your Mpowerment Project can host 'hot-topic' discussions on the importance of health insurance coverage and why young adult gay and bisexual men benefit from having health insurance. Share these stats. Have your Core Group and volunteers discuss ideas on how to get more young men enrolled in health care.  Host a Health-Insurance enrollment event with a local enrollment collaborator.  

Share on your social media!  Out2Enroll has reminders about the start of enrollment, free in-person LGBTQ-friendly assisters, and more. (Facebook Twitter

Grab your own Social Media Shareables

Social Media Sharables: Many of this year's material are unbranded, making it easier for Mpowerment Projects to use them freely. Out2Enroll will be updating graphics on a regular basis.  Check them out. 

Hashtags: #GetCovered #EnrollbyDec15 #BeOutBeHealthy 

Key Dates
  • November 1 Wednesday: Marketplaces open, #WellnessWed Twitter chat on enrollment 2pm ET
  • November 29 Wednesday: #WellnessWed Twitter chat on enrollment 2pm ET
  • December 3 Sunday:  December 9 LGBTQ Enrollment Week of Action
  • December 4 Monday: #MillennialMon Twitter chat on LGBTQ enrollment 3pm ET
  • December 5 Tuesday: LGBT Enrollment Week of Action Thunderclap 2pm ET.  Join here.
  • December 8 Friday: National Youth Enrollment Day
  • December 15 Friday: Final enrollment deadline for 2018 coverage* 

* Some states with their own marketplace (CA, CO, CT, DC, MA, MN, NY, RI, WA) have extended their open enrollment periods, but the dates vary - check with the marketplace in your state. 

Articles of interest / Articles to discuss with your participants.

7+ reasons why bisexual, pansexual, fluid, and queer people need to sign up for health insurance. It’s the most wonderful time of the year: open enrollment season!  - Medium.

"When Obamacare became law, many people didn’t know how it worked. Eight years later that’s still the case. As of February, one-third of Americans were unaware that it was the same thing as the Affordable Care Act. The effect was most pronounced among people under 30—which does not bode well for young people knowing how, when, and where to sign up for health care under the law."

Obamacare enrollment holds steady despite political turmoil. - CBS News 

Pace of sign-ups under Affordable Care Act blows past prior years. - The New York Times 

Health Insurance Marketplaces offer more low-cost options than ever before.  - Center for American Progress 

Sample Social Media Posts for your Mpowerment Project

FB: Open enrollment is BACK and is open for business! Do you qualify for lower prices on health insurance for 2018? Visit NOW to explore your options and #GetCovered! #EnrollByDec15

FB: It’s that time of year again – open enrollment is back! From now until Dec. 15th, you can find health insurance that fits your needs and your budget for 2018. Visit today to see if you qualify for a discount #GetCovered #EnrollByDec15

FB:  Got questions about health care? We’ve got you covered. The marketplaces are open for 2018! Time to shop for health insurance that works for you. Make sure you and your loved ones #GetCovered at before the December 15th deadline #EnrollByDec15

FB:  Waiting to enroll in health insurance? The wait is over. Visit today to compare plans, shop for the best prices, avoid the penalty, and #GetCovered #EnrollByDec15

T     Open enrollment means open for all, incl LGBTQ+ people & friends! Spread the word and #GetCovered at #EnrollByDec15

 Waiting to enroll in health insurance? The wait is over. Visit NOW to shop and save! #GetCovered #EnrollByDec15 is OPEN for business with new plans and new prices! #GetCovered TODAY before the Dec 15 deadline! #EnrollByDec15

Additional Resources.
Out2Enroll. Connects our communities - LGBT people and our families, friends and allies - with new health insurance coverage options under the Affordable Care Act.
Community Catalyst. Because we all should have a say in decisions that affect our health.
Families USA.  The voice for health care consumers.
Get America Covered. Sign up now for enrollment information or to help family and friends get covered! 

National Coalition for LGBT Health Guides: Get Enrolled Get Engaged Get Empowered 2018 (for LGBT people) and PLWHA