Health care reform
The Pre-existing Condition Insurance Plan (PCIP) will end on April 30, 2014 and will not be extended. However, the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) announced on April 24, 2014 that a special 60-day enrollment period will be offered for "exceptional circumstances" for individuals remaining in the program who have not found new coverage that begins on May 1. Those individuals will have until June 30 to select a health plan.1
The federally run PCIP had been scheduled to terminate January 1. Starting on that date, insurers were no longer able to turn away patients with health issues, making the plan unnecessary. To ensure PCIP enrollees’ coverage would be effective January 1, they had until December 23 to enroll through the new Health Insurance Marketplaces. However, as glitches with the marketplaces mounted, the administration became unsure that the system could handle a surge of December applications.2 As a result, PCIP enrollees were offered transitional coverage that would allow them more time to review marketplace plan options and enroll in coverage. The administration at first extended the enrollment deadline to January 31, and then further extended it to March 31 in an announcement made January 14. In March, the deadline was extended for a third time, to April 30, 2014. On April 24, 2014, CMS announced that individuals remaining in the PCIP would have until June 30 to select a health plan on the Health Insurance Marketplace. New coverage for anyone who uses this special enrollment period will be effective retroactively to May 1.
Learn more about PCIP here: http://www.unum.com/HealthcareReform/Law/201209_02
This extension will give people who have PCIP coverage more time to find the coverage that’s best for them on the Health Insurance Marketplaces. It will help ensure that many of the sickest Americans do not suffer a gap in health insurance coverage.
Although this extension has no direct impact on employers, they should be aware that PCIP is not a sustainable long-term solution for their most vulnerable employees.