New York State of Health Marketplace Open for 2016 Enrollment

Health Insurance Options Expand with Debut of New "Essential Plan"

ALBANY, N.Y. (November 02, 2015 ) - NY State of Health (NYSOH), the state's official health plan Marketplace, today announced that open enrollment is underway for New Yorkers looking for affordable health insurance coverage in 2016, beginning November 1 and until January 31, 2016.

NY State of Health offers a choice of Qualified Health Plans to residents in every county of the state. Qualifying individuals who purchase through NY State of Health will receive federal tax credits to reduce the monthly cost of coverage. In many areas of the state, the average value of the tax credit will increase in 2016 as compared with 2015. For example, in Albany County the monthly tax credit for an individual earning $30,000 a year will increase by over $60 to $186 a month. In Onondaga County, an individual earning $25,000 a year will see tax credits increase by more than $110 to $254 per month.

A new option on the Marketplace for 2016 is the Essential Plan. Available only through NY State of Health, the Essential Plan will lower premiums to $20 or less a month and provide comprehensive benefits for hundreds of thousands of lower income New Yorkers.

"With the launch of our third open enrollment period, we are delighted to be able to add the Essential Plan to the suite of plans offered on the New York State of Health," said NYSOH Executive Director Donna Frescatore. "The Essential Plan will give New Yorkers with lower incomes an affordable option for health coverage, and provide them with access to the health care they need and deserve."

The Essential Plan will cover essential health benefits, including inpatient and outpatient care, physician services, diagnostic services and prescription drugs, with no annual deductible and low out-of-pocket costs. Preventive care, such as routine office visits and recommended screenings, will be free. Consumers with incomes at or below 150 percent of the federal poverty level ($17,655 for a household of one; $36,375 for a household of four) will have no monthly premium. Those with slightly higher incomes at 200 percent of the federal poverty level ($23,540 for a household of one; $48,500 for a household of four) will have a low monthly premium of $20.

The Marketplace's third open enrollment period began on November 1. During its first two open enrollment periods, more than 2.1 million New Yorkers enrolled in health insurance coverage through the Marketplace.

Individual premium rates for 2016 will remain nearly 50 percent lower than they were before NYSOH was established. Premium rates were announced in July 2015 by the New York State Department of Financial Services (DFS) and can be found here:

New Yorkers eligible for Medicaid, the Essential Plan and all children can sign up for coverage through NY State of Health at any time during the year. The Small Business Marketplace for employers with 100 or fewer employees is open for enrollment throughout the year as well. For more information about the NY State of Health Marketplace, please visit

Additional Information on the Essential Plan can be found here:

The NYSOH's website plan preview, or anonymous shopping tool, which allows individuals to shop for a health plan before starting an application can be accessed here:

An interactive county map and other information showing the health and dental plans that will be offered on the Marketplace in 2016 is available at:

About NY State of Health

New York opened its Health Plan Marketplace, NY State of Health, in October 2013. The Marketplace's one stop health insurance shopping experience offers high quality comprehensive health plans. NY State of Health is the only place where consumers can qualify to get help paying for coverage through premium discounts or tax credits. Eligible New Yorkers can also enroll in Medicaid, Child Health Plus and the Essential Plan through the Marketplace all year. For more information about the NY State of Health Marketplace, please visit: or call Customer Service at 1-855-355-5777, TTY: 1.800.662.1220 or find an enrollment assistor.