ROCKFORD (WIFR) -- Procrastinators who have yet to sign up for health coverage under the Affordable Care Act still have a few more opportunities to get help with enrollment.
Some agencies are staying open extra hours to help the uninsured get coverage before Monday’s 11pm deadline. People who don't sign up for coverage face a fine. You can sign up on your own but there is help out there if you have questions about the process. Some people can qualify for tax credits to cover part of the cost of their health insurance.
Navigators burned the midnight oil at OSF ST. Anthony Medical Center Saturiday night. They set up in a conference room off the Emergency Room and stayed until midnight for anyone who still needed help. They’ll be back at it Sunday from 8am to 12am and again on Monday.
“Without health insurance, you're at risk for incurring massive amounts of debt if you get sick, and were trying to create a culture of insurance so that people who have never had insurance before can recognize that it’s good to have coverage even if it costs something," says Get Covered Illinois Navigator Ray Empereur.
"I think it is important to make sure that you have healthcare. I wouldn’t want to be caught without it in case an emergency would happen it would be more expensive out of pocket than to have insurance that can take care of you. It seemed like the right thing to do,” says Rockford University student Kahla Connley.
Between an event at Veteran's Memorial Hall in Rockford plus the event at OSF St. Anthony, navigators estimate they got another 60 people signed up for healthcare coverage on Saturday. The Department of Health and Human Services has reported 313,000 people have signed up for health insurance in Illinois since November.
More Registration Events:
OSF St. Anthony ER: Sunday: 8am-midnight; Monday: 7am-11pm
Winnebago County Health Dept: Monday: 8:30am-5pm