Pennsylvania Nears Launch of New Health Insurance Website

Pennsylvania is getting ready to launch its own website to sell Affordable Care Act-compliant policies that will replace the federally operated to enroll people for the 2021 insurance year, state officials said.

It is named “Pennie” and lawmakers approved the idea last year in a bid to get more people into it, lower their insurance costs and save money for the state government.

Pennsylvanians can sign up for an account on the website after it goes live, scheduled for later this month. Starting Nov. 1 through Jan. 15, shoppers can look for and buy insurance plans on it.

People who have been buying policies in the marketplace will be notified that they must transition to Pennie. State officials say they will begin marketing it to raise public awareness.

Gov. Tom Wolf’s administration has said it expects it can lower premiums by 5% to 10% for the roughly 400,000 people who have been buying policies in the marketplace.

Officials also say they are signing up certified brokers and assisters, and will have customer service centers to help people enroll in plans.

They also say they are spending more money than the federal government to help people enroll and are doing more enrollment activities. They say they will hold enrollment events in each county, with a focus on areas with the highest uninsured rates.