The latest open enrollment period for the Affordable Care Act's health insurance exchanges kicked off Tuesday.
Illinois' health insurance exchange, GetCoveredIllinois.gov, is a state and federal partnership, and residents are directed to the federal HealthCare.gov site to shop and sign up for insurance.
The Illinois Department of Insurance (DOI) says there have been "significant changes to the plans and prices" since last year, and as such, the department is "encouraging all Illinois residents to take their time and compare plans."
"The Illinois Department of Insurance recognizes the challenges Illinois consumers will face as they try to decide on a health care plan for next year," DOI Acting Director Anne Melissa Dowling said in a statement. "We want Illinois residents to know we are here as a free resource to make sure everyone is able to get the best coverage possible for themselves and their families."
There will be 331 plans available on the Illinois Marketplace in 2017. The following insurers will be offering plans: Celtic Insurance Company, CIGNA Health of Illinois Inc., Health Alliance Medical Plans, Inc. ("HAMP"), Health Care Service Corporation, a Mutual Legal Reserve Company ("HCSC", dba Blue Cross Blue Shield of Illinois), and Humana Health Plan, Inc.
People have until the end of January to enroll for health care coverage through the ACA's insurance marketplace, but they have to sign up by December 15 if they want their coverage to begin January 1.