(Memphis) They patiently waited at Memphis’ Main Library Friday, trying to sign up for health care before Monday’s deadline.
“I truly waited til the last moment. I was afraid of coming down and doing the situation anyway, just going down through the process. I was just a little nervous, scared and afraid of being here,” said Arlene Meeks of Germantown, after signing up for health care.
Fears aside, you can expect the walk-up and appointment assistance to continue for the final three days.
People are getting help navigating the website, choosing a plan and determining if they qualify for financial assistance in covering the cost.
“A lot of people think that it’s free. The subsidy is based on household size and income. If it’s just one individual that is trying to get signed up, their income has to be at least $11,490,” said Tamara Lott, a navigator who assists with enrollment.
If you don’t qualify for a subsidy, you pay the cost of the insurance.
Wendell Cody and his wife got help finding a plan they could afford with his medical disability so he can see a doctor.
“Now I am insured and I can go (to the doctor) when I need to go,” Cody said.
There is a penalty for not signing up for any health care by Monday’s deadline. You pay $95 or 1 percent of your income, whichever is greater. The amount increases every year.
The government is making exceptions if you at least tried to sign up or have special circumstances.
“If they are homeless, the victim of domestic violence. There are a whole lot of circumstances and situations where they would qualify for an exemption,” says Lott.
Those qualifications are listed on www.healthcare.gov.
The Codys are just glad they got everything done and are in.
“It has to be done. Just do it. Stop wasting time. Just do it,” said Henrietta Cody.
Christ Community Health Services has assisted five-thousand people with the health care sign-up process since December.
Enrollment assistance will be offered at Oak Court Mall this weekend.
There will be a citywide enrollment Saturday from 10am to 4pm at Mississippi Boulevard Christian Church at 70 North Bellevue.
The main library will hold a final enrollment Monday, March 31, 2014 from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.