The Mountain Times

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Vermont Health Connect goes live, Oct. 1

The Department of Vermont Health Access has announced that Vermont Health Connect is on schedule to begin serving Vermonters on Tuesday, Oct. 1, beginning a six-month open enrollment period when Vermonters can compare health insurance options, learn if they are eligible for free or reduced cost plans, and enroll in a quality health plan that fits their needs - all in one place.

"We're working hard to make Vermont Health Connect a success," said Mark Larson, Commissioner of the Department of Vermont Health Access. "As with any sophisticated system, the online marketplace will need improvements along the way. We have a great team that has been working non-stop to ensure the insurance marketplace works for Vermonters. As people across the state begin to explore health plans through Vermont Health Connect in the coming months, we will be standing by to answer questions, deal with concerns, and work to continually improve the consumer experience."

The online marketplace became available at 9 a.m. Tuesday, Oct. 1, then daily from 6 a.m. to midnight. Vermonters may choose to enroll through the web-based online marketplace, with in-person help from a Navigator or broker, or through the call center directly.
Vermonters with questions or who experience difficulty with the new system should contact Vermont Health Connect through the customer support center at (855) 899-9600. The customer support center will be open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Friday and 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday.

"With the launch of Vermont Health Connect, we have reached an important milestone on our path toward better health care coverage," said Gov. Peter Shumlin. Through Vermont Health Connect, small businesses and their employees, as well as anyone who does not have insurance through a job, will have the information they need to pick a plan that reflects their personal medical needs and budget.

"While we are opening on October 1, open enrollment is a six month window, so Vermonters will have plenty of time to browse and make a decision that is right for them," said Robin Lunge, Vermont's Director of Health Care Reform. "November is when most businesses and people who need coverage that starts on January 1st will be picking and enrolling in health plans."