Missouri Health Insurance
The Affordable Care Act will change the way many Missourians get their health insurance beginning in 2014. According to a 2012 Kaiser Family Foundation profile, Missouri residents voted against forming their own marketplace under the ACA. Missouri is one of five states still debating Medicaid expansion.
However, Missouri residents are still free to use the federal health insurance marketplace at HealthCare.gov. From there, Missourians can access qualified marketplace insurance plans and find out if they qualify for premium subsidies, Medicaid or the Children’s Health Insurance Program, known as CHIP.
To use the system, you simply need to register for an account and complete an application, which includes questions about your family members and anticipated 2014 income.
You can enroll in marketplace health plans from the marketplace, but you may need to contact your insurer separately to make payments. If you qualify for premium credits, also known as subsidies, they can be applied to monthly premiums right away.
Do you qualify for a Missouri health insurance subsidy?
There are three main paths to federal financial help with Missouri health insurance. The first is through tax credits (subsidies) that help pay for premiums on qualified marketplace health plans. The other ways are through Medicaid and CHIP.
Typically, only people who do not have other ways to get affordable health insurance can qualify for assistance. Missouri residents who already have employer-sponsored insurance or other private medical benefits are free to keep them as long as the plan qualifies under new guidelines.
The following groups of Missourians can get help paying for health insurance.
- Residents who earn between 100 and 400 percent of the federal poverty level — $11,490 to $45,960 for an individual and $23,550 to $94,200 for a family of four — may qualify for tax credits to reduce their premiums.
- Because Missouri did not expand Medicaid, eligibility for non-disabled adults is limited to parents of children who earn less than 23 percent of the poverty level, and this works out to about $5,486 a year for a family of four.
- Children from low- to moderate-income families with an income of less than 305 percent of the poverty level, or about $72,740 for a family of four, may qualify for coverage under CHIP.
Some Missouri residents who earn too much money to qualify for assistance may choose to use the marketplace to purchase health insurance anyway. Insurers are not allowed to deny coverage for pre-existing medical conditions, and they must provide mandated health benefits for preventive care.
Missouri health insurance companies
These companies have qualifying marketplace plans for Missouri.
- Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield
- Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas City
- Coventry Health and Life
- Coventry Health Care
Missouri health and coverage statistics
Missouri population (2013): 6,044,171
Population 65 and older (2012): 14.7 percent
Life expectancy (2010): 77.5 years
Number of Medicaid beneficiaries (2012): 810,600
Number of Medicare beneficiaries (2012): 897,600
Estimated number of uninsured residents (2012): 835,700
Overall state health ranking: 39
Sources: Kaiser Family Foundation, U.S. Census Bureau, America’s Health Rankings 2014 report.
Missouri health insurance resources
Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services: http://health.mo.gov/index.php
Missouri Department of Insurance: http://insurance.mo.gov/
Missouri HealthNet for Kids: http://dss.mo.gov/fsd/mchild.htm
Kaiser Family Foundation: http://kff.org/tag/missouri/