The April 2020 unemployment report saw the number of Americans out of work rise to 14.7% with a record loss of 20.5 million jobs lost in April – the worst job loss in recorded history. According to Kipplinger, 18 million of those jobs were temporary layoffs. As the coronavirus continues, even as businesses throughout the country are beginning to reopen and people are returning to work, this is a slow process, which means that the number of unemployed will stay high for some time.
Industries that lost more than 50 percent of their employees include personal services, food service, retail clothing, sports, dentists, movie production, amusements, and furniture. Many other industries, such as airlines, temp agencies, and daycare, lost over 30 percent of their employees. Although job numbers are expected to increase during May, they are predicted to remain low in many sectors, particularly those that require groups of people to gather.
Unemployed and Uninsured in NY
For many Americans, particularly New Yorkers, losing their job has also meant losing their insurance. While some emergency stimulus measures have been passed, many Americans without income are faced with no health insurance in the midst of a global pandemic. This makes it more important than ever to understand your insurance options. Fortunately, tests for COVID-19 are free for everyone, regardless of whether you have health insurance or not. However, this is not the case when it comes to treatment.
If you contract COVID-19 and you need hospital treatment and you have no insurance, you could likely end up with an insurance bill that could be as high as $10,000 - $20,000. If you have lost your insurance because of recent unemployment or you were already uninsured before the coronavirus outbreak, and you live in New York, you have options for regaining health care coverage. Which ones you can afford will depend on your current financial situation.
Health Care Coverage Options
If your income has dropped to within 138% of the U.S. federal poverty level, you may be eligible to apply for Medicaid. This would mean that your individual income is no greater than $17,618 a year or your family income (for a family of four) is no greater than $36,158 a year. Although any unemployment benefits you receive count as income, government stimulus payments do not. Processing your Medicaid application can take up to 30 days, but if you are currently undergoing a medical emergency, staring so on your application can help to expedite the process.
Coverage Through a Health Insurance Exchange
A state health insurance exchange allows you to buy individual or family insurance directly. It allows you to shop for a healthcare plan through your state’s marketplace if you have recently lost your insurance due to unemployment. The enrollment period lasts for 30-60 days after you qualify.
Each year, every state has a period called open enrollment. Typically, it lasts from November through January, though it may vary from state to state. Because of the coronavirus pandemic, a number of states have reopened their open enrollment period to allow people who have no insurance or who have recently lost their insurance due to unemployment, to shop for health care coverage. Open enrollment is currently only available in states that operate their own health exchange, such as New York.
How Zupnick & Associates are Helping the Uninsured get Insurance?
Zupnick & Associates is a New York-based all-inclusive, client-focused brokerage company. They serve many industries including food franchises, hospitality franchises, real estate projects, and general and specialty contractors. Their focus is on group employee benefits packages that include health, life, dental, and voluntary benefits.
Zupnick aims to help you obtain the health care protection you need and the savings you deserve. As a team of insurance brokers, they can help you identify your individual or family health coverage needs. Armed with information, you can make an informed decision about the type of insurance coverage you need and can afford to protect your family during the COVID-19 pandemic.
If you are an individual who has lost your insurance due to recent unemployment and you would like to regain coverage call our team at Zupnick & Associates today on 718-534-1194.