New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy

Chris Pedota/NorthJersey.com via USA TODAY NETWORK

New Jersey Launches New Site To Promote ACA Open Enrollment

October 30, 2018 - 7:11 pm
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TRENTON, N.J. (AP) – New Jersey on Tuesday launched a new website to promote Affordable Care Act open enrollment.

Democratic Gov. Phil Murphy appeared at a news conference in Trenton with members of his Cabinet, Democratic Sen. Bob Menendez and Rep. Bonnie Watson Coleman to unveil the new effort.

The administration says it is the first coordinated public awareness campaign by the state since the implementation of the law _ frequently called ``Obamacare.''

Open enrollment starts Thursday and goes through Dec. 15.

GetCovered.NJ.gov provides users with information about eligibility, contacts and frequently asked questions.

The effort comes after Murphy's January executive order calling on his administration to identify ways to increase public awareness of open enrollment.

It also follows legislation enacted under Murphy and the Democrat-led Legislature that provided for a state insurance mandate and a reinsurance program. Together those items have led to an estimated 9.3 percent drop in rates for 2019, according to the administration.

Murphy brought politics into the event by jabbing at Republican President Donald Trump, who has pushed for but fallen short of repealing his predecessor's signature law.

"I know President Trump is working on that caravan morning, noon and night but if he gets a minute to listen to us today: Take it from New Jersey, when you uphold the principles of the Affordable Care Act, you end up with more affordable health care,'' Murphy said.

New Jersey's efforts come after President Trump's administration cut the open enrollment period from three months to six weeks in 2017 and 2018 and slashed the advertising budget for the ACA.

The new promotional effort comes with an $825,000 price tag, according to the administration. That includes $375,000 in funding for five community organizations that will help people navigate enrollment. An additional $450,000 is being set aside for a public awareness campaign.

About 800,000 residents have coverage under the law. Murphy said there is not yet a goal for how many more people he hopes to register for insurance under the law.