Illinois officials overhaul health care enrollment

CARBONDALE, Ill. (AP) - Illinois Department of Insurance officials are quickly working to enroll residents through the health care marketplace in about half the amount of time as last year.

The Southern Illinoisan reports that agency officials are adding 230 extra phone hours and touring 102 counties to improve the marketplace shopping experience. Illinois is also partnering with GoHealth to show customers available plan offerings on and off the Affordable Care Act exchange.

Open enrollment began Nov. 1 and will be six weeks long, unlike the 12 weeks last year.

Illinois Department of Insurance Director Jennifer Hammer says consumers need to enroll in coverage before the Dec. 15 deadline to avoid penalties or fines.

She says there's no guarantee the federal government will be lenient toward late-comers as they have been in previous years.


Information from: Southern Illinoisan,