January 22, 2016

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In This Issue
NAHU Addresses Mid-Year Compensation Changes in Comments Submitted on 2017 Letter to Issuers
NAHU Continues Push for Permanent Repeal of Cadillac/Excise Tax
Setting up the Final Nail in the Reconciliation Coffin and Planning for an Alternative
CMS Announces Changes to SEPs
CMS Administrator Slavitt Testifies on Co-Ops
Help Us Send Feedback to Congress
Join the Small Group Champion, Representative Brett Guthrie (R-KY), at the HUPAC Reception!
Message from CMS: Send Email in Final Days of the OEP to Get More People Covered
The ShiftShapers Podcast with David Saltzman
HUPAC Roundup
What We’re Reading
Tools
E-mail the Editor
Visit the NAHU Website
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Message from CMS: Send Email in Final Days of the OEP to Get More People Covered

There are just nine days remaining before the final January 31 deadline to get 2016 coverage. Based on our research, we know that one of the most impactful tactics for getting more people covered is direct outreach through email. In the final days we’ll be sending more emails, too, but we need your help to get the word out even more widely.
 
If you have a list that includes people who may need insurance or know of others who do, could you send at least one email in these final days?
 
Below are some useful tips that include the most important information that we need to get across to people in the next nine days.
 
If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to reach out!

E-MAILING YOUR LIST
How to Use:
One of the most effective ways to help encourage Americans to get covered during HealthCare.gov Open Enrollment is to send carefully constructed emails that put facts in the hands of consumers who need to get covered. The very best emails are the ones you write for your audience. You know the people who read your emails better than anyone. As you review the guidelines below, identify opportunities to work the language and messaging into your communications as appropriate.

Top Tips for Writing Emails

1) Emphasize the deadline: This could well be the most incentivizing point, so make sure to include it! If people miss the deadline, they’ll likely have to wait another year to get covered. That means going another year without the peace of mind that comes with coverage when they need it – if they get sick, break a bone, or need emergency surgery – and being required to pay a penalty for not having coverage. We’ve found this type of messaging to be most effective, starting about a week before each deadline.
 
Language to get you started:

  • January 31st is the final deadline for coverage and the last chance to avoid the penalty in 2016.
  • Open Enrollment only happens once each year. This year’s Open Enrollment for 2016 coverage runs from November 1 through January 31. Don’t miss your chance to get covered.
  • If you don't get covered by the January 31 deadline, you could face a penalty on your taxes next year of $695 or more.

2) Remind people that getting covered might not be as expensive as they think: Many people who gain coverage through HealthCare.gov are often surprised by how much can they save when they learn about the financial assistance available. Don’t miss an opportunity to use email communications to remind consumers that the most people who sign-up receive financial assistance to help lower the cost of their monthly premiums. Remember to simplify statistics as much as possible. (e.g. 8 out of 10 people)
 
Language to get you started:

  • 8 out of 10 people who enroll in health coverage through HealthCare.gov qualify for financial help to make their monthly premiums more affordable.
  • Most people can find plans with monthly premiums for less than $75 a month after tax credits.
  • Add action-oriented language, like “See if you qualify for financial assistance.”

3) Remind people that getting covered won’t take a long as they think: Point out the fact that there are free tools and free personal assistance available to help make signing up easier than ever. 
 
Language to get you started:

  • During last year’s open enrollment, it took most people only about 10 minutes to submit an application.
  • If you have questions about signing up or want to talk through your options with a trained professional, free and confidential assistance is just a call away.
    • Marketplace call center representatives are available to help 24 hours, every day at 1-800-318-2596.
    • [Localize with information about enrollment centers and events in your community – you can find details at https://localhelp.healthcare.gov.]  

4) Social norming works: It’s simple, but true. People are more likely to enroll if they know others are enrolling too. Any language that leans into the idea that other people are getting covered, and they’re doing it right now – friends, neighbors, responsible people who organized and prepared – will be helpful.
 
Language to get you started:

5) Enlist their help to get others covered: Consider a dual ask in your outreach: provide a link to HealthCare.gov for people who need to purchase insurance, but also ask those who are already covered to help you spread the word to their friends and family via social networks and forwarding to a friend.
 
Language to get you started:

  • If you – or someone you know – needs health insurance, now’s your chance to sign up for quality and affordable coverage.
  • Open Enrollment only runs until January 31. Make sure your family and friends know that now’s their chance to get covered.

Sample Email

Subject Line: Need Health Insurance? Here’s what you need to know:
 
If you – or someone you know – needs health insurance, now’s your chance to sign up for quality and affordable coverage.
 
[Add Link] Visit HealthCare.gov right now to apply and enroll in coverage.

[Insert a red “Apply” Button with a link to HealthCare.gov]
 
Here are a few fast facts about getting covered through HealthCare.gov:

  • It's not as expensive as you think. 8 out of 10 people who enroll in a health plan receive financial help. In fact, most people can find a health insurance plan for as little as $75 or less per month.
  • It doesn't take as long as you think. During last year’s open enrollment, it took most people only about 10 minutes to submit an application.
  • It is the law, the January 31 deadline is your last chance to avoid the penalty on your taxes of $695 or more next year.
  • Free help is available! If you have a question about HealthCare.gov, you can always call 1-800-318-2596 for personal assistance, all day and every day. The call is free. Trained enrollment specialists will provide free, personal help and share other important advice, including how to qualify for financial help, how to start an application, or how to re-enroll. 

Don’t miss your chance to get covered and tell your friends why they should, too! 

Measure your impact:
 
We want to make sure we can correctly attribute every application submitted thanks to an email you send. Append the following UTM parameter to your links to ensure applications stemming from your emails get properly associated with your organization.
 
Sample UTM Parameter (replace the yellow highlight with your information):
?utm_medium=email&utm_source=COMPANYNAME&utm_campaign=partner&utm_content=MM_DD_YY

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