Vermont Health Connect to host free public education events at local libraries

By Morgan True
For Vermont Digger
ˇVermont Health Connect will host a series of educational events at local libraries over the next month to help people better understand their options for purchasing health insurance through the exchange.
The events are scheduled in preparation for the upcoming open enrollment period when people will select their 2016 health plans. Open enrollment will last from Nov. 1 through Jan. 31.

A recent survey conducted by the state showed respondents had a poor grasp of health insurance terminology, especially when it comes to the health insurance subsidies available through the Affordable Care Act.

A recent national survey showed that 41 percent of respondents said they spent 15 minutes or less picking their health plans, far less time than most people would spend shopping for other important products such as a car or apartment.
“We are working to ensure that all Vermonters have the information they need to find the right health plan for them,” said Steven Costantino, commissioner of the Department of Vermont Health Access. “The world of health insurance has a language of its own. We want to make that language easier to understand.”

The events will be free and open to the public. They will be held at the following locations and times:

Newport: Oct. 3, 10-11:30 a.m.
Goodrich Memorial Library

Rutland: Oct. 6, 5:30-7 p.m.
Rutland Public Library

Burlington: Oct. 7, 5:30-7 p.m.
Fletcher Free Library

Essex: Oct. 8, 6:00-7:30 p.m.
Essex Free Library

Lyndon: Oct. 13, 5:30-7 p.m.
Cobleigh Public Library

Barton: Oct. 19, 5:30-7 p.m.
Jones Memorial Library

Barre: Oct. 20, 5:30-7 p.m.
Aldrich Public Library

Brattleboro: Oct. 21, 5:30-7 p.m.
Brooks Library

Bennington: Oct. 22, 5:30-7 p.m.
Bennington Free Library