Idahoans Covered on COBRA Can Still Buy Insurance Through Your Health Idaho


By Paul Johnson

Boise, Idaho ( KMVT-TV / KSVT-TV ) - Idahoans who are currently getting insurance through COBRA – the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act – have until July 1 to shop for a health insurance plan through Your Health Idaho. The special enrollment period was recently announced by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

COBRA is a federal act that gives employees the right to pay their premiums for group health insurance for a limited time if they lose their job or have their hours reduced to the point where they lose their company coverage.

“We hope that Idahoans will take advantage of this special enrollment period,” said Jody Olson, communications director for Your Health Idaho. “This is an opportunity for people to find long-term health insurance coverage.”

Anyone with COBRA coverage who is interested in purchasing a health insurance plan through Your Health Idaho needs to call the Marketplace Call Center at 1-800-318-2596 to activate their special enrollment period. After a person is approved for a special enrollment period, they can shop online or work with an agent, broker or In-Person Assister to enroll in a health insurance plan. There is no charge to work with an agent, broker or In-Person Assister. If you need to find someone who can help you sign-up for health insurance visit and click on “Find In-Person Assisters, agents or brokers near you” on the homepage.

The special COBRA enrollment period only lasts until July 1. If people do not select a health insurance plan on the exchange by that date then they will have to wait until open enrollment starts in November unless their COBRA coverage expires before November.

“If you qualify for this special enrollment period, do not wait until the last minute,” said Olson. “Start looking for a health insurance plan that meets your needs and the needs of your family today.”

There may be other opportunities for Idahoans to enroll in health insurance through Your Health Idaho. Idahoans who experience significant changes in their lives, known in the health insurance industry as qualifying life events, may be able to sign up for insurance during a special enrollment period. If people get married, have a baby, adopt a child, go through changes in employment, move to another state, experience the death of a spouse or child, lose insurance coverage or are released from prison they can qualify to sign up for health insurance on the exchange outside of open enrollment. Members of Idaho’s five tribes are also able to sign up for health insurance through Your Health Idaho at any time during the year.

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