Health Insurance Affordability Fund Passes

Contact: Monica Caballeros
Email: [email protected]
Phone: 720-496-2574

Denver— Connect for Health Colorado® Chief Executive Officer Kevin Patterson released the following statement on the Health Insurance Affordability Enterprise (Senate Bill 20-215) after the bill passed through the General Assembly:

“We’re excited to build on the successes of the reinsurance program with specific policies designed to help Coloradans who are still struggling to access coverage. It is more important than ever that we remove barriers to health care by providing portable and affordable coverage options. Connect for Health Colorado is ready to work as a partner on implementing these new solutions, and we’re proud to be a resource for our state partners as they develop solutions to address persistent gaps in health coverage and affordability.”

The Health Insurance Affordability Enterprise protects and expands financial help for health coverage and will be housed in the Division of Insurance. A board will oversee the enterprise fund, which would be allocated to:

1) Fund the reinsurance program.
2) Provide financial help to people with lower incomes whose net premium would increase as the individual market price for insurance decreases.
3) Set up a fund to provide financial help to people who do not otherwise qualify under Affordable Care Act rules (e.g. households who are not qualified because of the “family glitch”).

Connect for Health Colorado will work closely with state regulators to develop a full implementation plan for the Health Insurance Affordability Enterprise.

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About Connect for Health Colorado


Connect for Health Colorado is a public, nonprofit entity established by the Colorado General Assembly in 2011 to create a health insurance marketplace. Since 2013, we’ve been helping individuals, families, and small employers compare plans, apply for financial help, and buy health insurance. As Colorado’s official health insurance marketplace, we are the only place to apply for financial help to lower the monthly cost of premiums. Customers can shop online; get help by phone or online chat from Customer Service Center representatives; and access expert, in-person help from a statewide network of certified Brokers and community-based Assisters. For more information: ConnectforHealthCO.com

Easy Enrollment Moving Forward

Contact: Monica Caballeros
Email: [email protected]
Phone: 720-496-2574

Denver– Connect for Health Colorado® Chief Executive Officer Kevin Patterson released the following statement on the Health Care Coverage Easy Enrollment Program (HB 20-1236) after the bill passed through the General Assembly:

“I am excited that we can extend access to affordable health coverage for Coloradans with the simple act of checking a box. Easy Enrollment can provide financial stability and improve health outcomes for thousands of residents, many of whom are unfamiliar with the sign up process, or do not know they qualify for help. Through legislation such as Easy Enrollment, we work toward our goals of reducing the uninsured rate and educating Coloradans on the financial help we provide.” 

The Easy Enrollment Program would allow Coloradans to mark on their state tax return that they are uninsured and opt-in for their information to be shared with Connect for Health Colorado, so we can see if they qualify for financial help or Health First Colorado (Medicaid). Connect for Health Colorado co-chairs the advisory committee to guide implementation and administration of the Easy Enrollment program, along with the Department of Revenue. The program will take effect in 2022.

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About Connect for Health Colorado

Connect for Health Colorado is a public, nonprofit entity established by the Colorado General Assembly in 2011 to create a health insurance marketplace.  Since 2013, we’ve been helping individuals, families, and small employers compare plans, apply for financial help, and buy health insurance. As Colorado’s official health insurance marketplace, we are the only place to apply for financial help to lower the monthly cost of premiums. Customers can shop online; get help by phone or online chat from Customer Service Center representatives; and access expert, in-person help from a statewide network of certified Brokers and community-based Assisters. For more information:  ConnectforHealthCO.com


More than 14,000 Coloradans gain health coverage during emergency Special Enrollment Period; Marketplace reports higher enrollments and lower costs in 2020

Contact: Monica Caballeros, 720-496-2574

DENVER — A total of 14,263 Coloradans gained health insurance coverage during Connect for Health Colorado’s emergency Special Enrollment Period, which ran from March 20 to April 30. The Marketplace opened the Special Enrollment Period in response to the outbreak of the coronavirus (COVID-19), to ensure as many Coloradans as possible have access to health care.

“We’ve seen a tremendous response to the emergency Special Enrollment Period and need for affordable health coverage,” said Chief Executive Officer Kevin Patterson. “As always, we are here to help Coloradans get covered and stay covered as they navigate life changes this year.”

Covering more than 14,000 previously uninsured Coloradans during the emergency Special Enrollment Period was a milestone in a successful year for the state’s official health insurance marketplace. We received strong support promoting the Special Enrollment Period from community partners and our statewide network of Brokers and Assisters. The new Open Enrollment Report for Plan Year 2020, released today, includes additional highlights for the 2020 plan year, including:

  • 166,850 Coloradans enrolled for 2020 health coverage during the Open Enrollment period.
  • 74 percent of customers qualified for financial help to reduce the monthly cost of health insurance.
  • Statewide rates for full price premiums dropped by 20 percent, which lead to an uptick in new enrollments in many rural counties.
  • 46 percent of our customers enrolled with the help of a trained and certified Broker, and another 6 percent enrolled with the help of a community-based Assister.

The new report includes more detailed information about changes to premium costs and financial help by county, the improved customer experience and our outreach tactics. Preliminary enrollment totals at the close of the Marketplace’s seventh Open Enrollment period were released in Jan. The Marketplace publishes monthly updates on total medical enrollments, as we continue to enroll Coloradans throughout the year who have life-change events.

Coloradans who have had a change in job, income or living situation should contact Connect for Health Colorado to find what health care coverage and financial help could be available. There are many ways to contact us to find out if you qualify for a 60-day Special Enrollment Period and get enrolled:

  • Online: ConnectforHealthCO.com
  • By phone: 855-752-6749
  • Virtual or phone appointment with an enrollment expert: ConnectforHealthCO.com/we-can-help/

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About Connect for Health Colorado

Connect for Health Colorado is a public, non-profit entity established by the Colorado General Assembly in 2011 to create a health insurance Marketplace. Since 2013, we’ve been helping individuals, families and small employers compare plans, apply for financial help and buy health insurance. As Colorado’s official health insurance marketplace, we are the only place to apply for financial help to lower the monthly cost of premiums. Customers can shop online; get help by phone or online chat from Customer Service Center representatives; and access expert, in-person help from a statewide network of certified Brokers and community-based Assisters. For more information: ConnectforHealthCO.com

10,000 Coloradans Covered during Emergency Special Enrollment Period So Far; Marketplace Open to Those with Life Changes

Contact: Monica Caballeros, [email protected], 720-496-2574

DENVER– More than 10,000 Coloradans so far have signed up for a health insurance plan through Connect for Health Colorado’s emergency Special Enrollment period, which ends Thursday, April 30, 2020. The Marketplace opened the Special Enrollment period on March 20 in response to the outbreak of the coronavirus (COVID-19). Uninsured residents have nine days left to enroll for coverage that begins on May 1.

“We created this enrollment opportunity to relieve some stress for thousands of families who are trying to figure out their health coverage needs during this time.” said Chief Executive Officer Kevin Patterson. “I encourage residents who are uninsured to sign up before the April 30 deadline.” 

Coloradans who have had a change in job, income or living situation should contact Connect for Health Colorado to find what health care coverage and financial help could be available. In addition to the COVID-19 Special Enrollment period, residents might qualify for a 60-day Special Enrollment period that allows them to sign up for a new health insurance plan or to change their current plan.

Business owners who are looking for options as employee insurance benefits end can direct employees to Connect for Health Colorado to enroll. Our plans are often far more affordable than COBRA, and we offer financial help.

As a reminder, Connect for Health Colorado only sells health insurance plans with a full package of benefits, known as Qualified Health Plans. Plans sold outside of the Marketplace may only cover a limited number of injuries or diseases. The Colorado Division of Insurance is warning consumers about marketing organizations and agents using misleading tactics to sell products that are not Qualified Health Plans. Connect for Health Colorado encourages residents to contact our trained and certified brokers and assisters, who continue to provide virtual and/or phone appointments.

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About Connect for Health Colorado

Connect for Health Colorado is a public, non-profit entity established by the Colorado General Assembly in 2011 to create a health insurance Marketplace. Since 2013, we’ve been helping individuals, families and small employers compare plans, apply for financial help and buy health insurance. As Colorado’s official health insurance marketplace, we are the only place to apply for financial help to lower the monthly cost of premiums. Customers can shop online; get help by phone or online chat from Customer Service Center representatives; and access expert, in-person help from a statewide network of certified Brokers and community-based Assisters. For more information: ConnectforHealthCO.com

Connect for Health Colorado Extends Emergency Special Enrollment Period until April 30 in Response to COVID-19 Outbreak

Contact: Monica Caballeros, [email protected]

DENVER — Due to the growing number of coronavirus (COVID-19) cases and increased need for health coverage, Connect for Health Colorado will extend an Emergency Special Enrollment period for uninsured Coloradans until Thursday, April 30, 2020.

Since March 20, approximately 5,500 individuals protected their health and safety by signing up for a health insurance plan through this Special Enrollment period. People who enroll during the extended timeframe will have coverage as of May 1.

“By extending the Special Enrollment period, we are doing our part to help Coloradans get the health coverage they need,” said Chief Executive Officer Kevin Patterson. “If you are experiencing an unexpected loss of health coverage or a change in employment, we are ready to help you explore your options.”

As a reminder, Coloradans can sign up for a plan throughout the year if they experience other qualifying life change events, including loss of job-based coverage. Individuals may also be eligible to enroll in a new plan if they experience a loss in income. Those who qualify for Health First Colorado (Medicaid) or the Child Health Plan Plus program can enroll online through the PEAK application any time during the year.

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About Connect for Health Colorado

Connect for Health Colorado is a public, non-profit entity established by the Colorado General Assembly in 2011 to create a health insurance Marketplace. Since 2013, we’ve been helping individuals, families and small employers compare plans, apply for financial help and buy health insurance. As Colorado’s official health insurance marketplace, we are the only place to apply for financial help to lower the monthly cost of premiums. Customers can shop online; get help by phone or online chat from Customer Service Center representatives; and access expert, in-person help from a statewide network of certified Brokers and community-based Assisters. For more information: ConnectforHealthCO.com

Uninsured Coloradans Can Enroll during a Special Enrollment Period in Response to COVID-19 Outbreak

DENVER — To help as many people as possible protect their health and safety during the COVID-19 outbreak, Connect for Health Colorado® announces a new Special Enrollment period that starts Friday, March 20, 2020 and ends Friday, April 3, 2020Coloradans who are uninsured qualify to enroll in a health insurance plan for coverage that starts April 1, 2020.

To sign up for coverage through the Marketplace- the only place where residents can qualify for financial help to lower costs- Coloradans can complete an application and select a health insurance plan:

  • Online at ConnectforHealthCO.com.
  • Over the phone at 855-752-6749, Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. We’re also extending Customer Service Center hours this weekend and next, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.
  • Working with a certified enrollment expert. Many local experts continue to provide virtual and/or phone appointments.

Applicants should select the enrollment reason as, “Will lose or lost health insurance and/or have no other health coverage during the COVID-19 outbreak” and input the application date as the qualifying life change event date. Residents who take these steps will not be asked by health insurance companies to provide documentation to verify their eligibility for the Special Enrollment period.

As always, Coloradans can sign up for a plan if they experience other qualifying life change events, including loss of job-based and Health First Colorado (Medicaid) coverage. Coloradans may be eligible to enroll in a new plan if they experience changes or losses in income, which should be reported to Connect for Health Colorado. Residents who qualify for Health First Colorado (Medicaid) or the Child Health Plan Plus program can enroll online through the PEAK application any time during the year.

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About Connect for Health Colorado

Connect for Health Colorado is a public, non-profit entity established by the Colorado General Assembly in 2011 to create a health insurance Marketplace. Since 2013, we’ve been helping individuals, families and small employers compare plans, apply for financial help and buy health insurance. As Colorado’s official health insurance marketplace, we are the only place to apply for financial help to lower the monthly cost of premiums. Customers can shop online; get help by phone or online chat from Customer Service Center representatives; and access expert, in-person help from a statewide network of certified Brokers and community-based Assisters. For more information: ConnectforHealthCO.com

Connect for Health Colorado® Supports the Colorado Affordable Health Care Option Plan

Denver– On Monday, Connect for Health Colorado’s Board of Directors voted in support of House Bill 20-1349, which details the Colorado Affordable Health Care Option plan. The bill creates an advisory board, of which Connect for Health Colorado’s Chief Executive Officer is named as a member, to guide development and implementation of the plan.  

“Colorado continues to lead the nation in developing innovative solutions for our health care challenges,” said Connect for Health Colorado’s CEO Kevin Patterson. “I am confident this legislation is headed in the right direction and we stand ready to advise and implement. I look forward to a thoughtful discussion with policy makers and our state partners about how we use this proposal to lower health care costs for Coloradans.”

“Board members for Connect for Health Colorado continually explore options to increase competition and lower health care costs for residents,” said Board Chair Adela Flores-Brennen. “We will continue to prioritize issues of access and affordability, especially for Coloradans who receive financial assistance to lower costs, as we monitor the bill’s progress this session.”

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About Connect for Health Colorado

Connect for Health Colorado is a public, nonprofit entity established by the Colorado General Assembly in 2011 to create a health insurance marketplace.  Since 2013, we’ve been helping individuals, families, and small employers compare plans, apply for financial help, and buy health insurance. As Colorado’s official health insurance marketplace, we are the only place to apply for financial help to lower the monthly cost of premiums. Customers can shop online; get help by phone or online chat from Customer Service Center representatives; and access expert, in-person help from a statewide network of certified Brokers and community-based Assisters. For more information:  ConnectforHealthCO.com

Statement from Connect for Health Colorado® CEO Kevin Patterson regarding the Colorado Affordable Health Care Option

March 5, 2020

Contact: Monica Caballeros
[email protected], 720-496-2574

Denver– Connect for Health Colorado® Chief Executive Officer Kevin Patterson released the following statement on the announcement of the Colorado Affordable Health Care Option:

“We are evaluating the bill in depth to ensure we are ready to implement the Colorado Affordable Health Care Option. We are especially focused on evaluating the bill’s impact to financially-assisted Coloradans and whether their needs are suitably addressed in this bill. I’m confident that our Marketplace and our partners position us well to implement the program should the bill pass. We are eager to increase access, affordability, and plan choice to Coloradans and are prepared to support our state partners as they strive to maximize coverage and affordability.”

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About Connect for Health Colorado

Connect for Health Colorado is a public, nonprofit entity established by the Colorado General Assembly in 2011 to create a health insurance marketplace.  Since 2013, we’ve been helping individuals, families, and small employers compare plans, apply for financial help, and buy health insurance. As Colorado’s official health insurance marketplace, we are the only place to apply for financial help to lower the monthly cost of premiums. Customers can shop online; get help by phone or online chat from Customer Service Center representatives; and access expert, in-person help from a statewide network of certified Brokers and community-based Assisters. For more information:  ConnectforHealthCO.com

Statement from Connect for Health Colorado® Regarding Supreme Court Decision on the Public Charge Rule

Jan. 27, 2020

Denver – Connect for Health Colorado® Chief Executive Officer Kevin Patterson released the following statement in response to today’s Supreme Court decision on the Public Charge Rule:“I am disappointed about the overall impact this ruling will have on all of us, but especially on our friends, neighbors and co-workers seeking a permanent residency status. This rule will force people to get health care in more expensive ways and will cause worse health outcomes for Coloradans; exactly the opposite of our mission and the work our state has led to increase access, affordability and choice in health. I’d like to remind our customers that the financial help they may receive through the Marketplace does not count negatively against them if going through the public charge review process.  Our Assisters, Brokers and Customer Service Center can answer questions about financial help. We also developed a resource that includes immigration lawyers who can answer questions more directly about the public charge process.”

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About Connect for Health Colorado
Connect for Health Colorado is a public, nonprofit entity established by the Colorado General Assembly in 2011 to create a health insurance marketplace.  Since 2013, we’ve been helping individuals, families and small employers compare plans, apply for financial help and buy health insurance. As Colorado’s official health insurance marketplace, we are the only place to apply for financial help to lower the monthly cost of health insurance. Customers can shop online; get help by phone or online chat from Customer Service Center representatives; and access expert, in-person help from a statewide network of certified brokers and community-based assisters. For more information: ConnectforHealthCO.com

Nearly 167,000 Coloradans Signed Up for 2020 Health Insurance Coverage

DENVER — Nearly 167,000 Coloradans signed up for a health insurance plan through the state’s official Marketplace by the end of the Open Enrollment period, according to preliminary data released today by Connect for Health Colorado®.

Among the 2020 plan selections, about 20 percent are by customers who are new to Connect for Health Colorado and 80 percent are returning customers.

“This has been another successful Open Enrollment period,” said Chief Executive Officer Kevin Patterson. “Now the work continues to increase access, affordability and choice for residents. We are fully engaged with partners at the state and in the legislature to advise and help implement innovative approaches to lower the cost of health care and increase choice.”

Outside of the Open Enrollment period, Coloradans can only sign up for a health insurance plan through the Marketplace if they experience a “Qualified Life Event,” like losing job-based insurance, losing Medicaid, or certain family changes. Coloradans can continue to get help signing up for coverage from certified brokers and community-based assisters during their Special Enrollment period.

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About Connect for Health Colorado

Connect for Health Colorado is a public, non-profit entity established by the Colorado General Assembly in 2011 to create a health insurance Marketplace.  Since 2013, we’ve been helping individuals, families and small employers compare plans, apply for financial help and buy health insurance. As Colorado’s official health insurance marketplace, we are the only place to apply for financial help to lower the monthly cost of premiums. Customers can shop online; get help by phone or online chat from Customer Service Center representatives; and access expert, in-person help from a statewide network of certified Brokers and community-based Assisters. For more information:  ConnectforHealthCO.com