As open enrollment deadline nears, Richland Library helps with s - wistv.com - Columbia, South Carolina

As open enrollment deadline nears, Richland Library helps with signups

(Source: WIS) (Source: WIS)
COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) -

You have a little more than 2 weeks left to sign up for Affordable Care Act coverage, and social workers at the Richland County Library are seeing a much higher volume of people signing up compared to last year.

One of the library's social workers, Sharita Moultrie, told WIS that she's seen a lot more variety of the clients who are signing up. She says she's seeing more families, more individuals between jobs and people who want to see if the ACA might be cheaper than their employer-sponsored plan.

“It's literally been like that nonstop every day since open enrollment began November 1st,” Moultrie said.

She says they have seen a little bit of an increase in premiums this year - but with that, the tax credits have increased as well.

"The premiums are about the same,” Moultrie said. “People are seeing just a little bit of an increase. But the good thing about that is that as that has gone up, the tax credits and the financial help has gone up as well."

When a client comes in for their appointment, Moultrie takes them through the entire process. They set up an account on healthcare.gov, and the filter plans based on the client’s specific health needs and financial restrictions.

“We have consumers who don’t want to pay a lot of premium up front – so we can tailor the plans they see and can filter with what works for their budget,” Moultrie said. “Then we have some individuals who may have a chronic health condition.

Maybe they’re diabetic or they have high blood pressure. They go to the doctor more frequently, so what’s going to matter to them is their co-pay. It's gonna vary per consumer depending on what matters most to them."

The entire process takes about an hour.

"We take them through just about every step depending on the consumer's level of knowledge, but we take them through every piece so that when they leave here they have a better understanding of how healthcare works and how it's going to work for them."

If you’d like help signing up through the Richland Library, you can call (803) 231-6330 or email at socialworker@richlandlibrary.com

The library will also be holding an event at Brookland Baptist on the last day of enrollment, Dec. 15. It’ll be from noon through midnight. Sign up online at signupsc.org, or call the number above.

Copyright 2017 WIS. All rights reserved. 

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