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Cortez Masto touts relief law's help for health insurance

Cortez Masto touts relief law's help for health insurance

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HENDERSON, Nev. (AP) — U.S. Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto of Nevada is encouraging people to shop on the state’s health insurance exchange to see if they can get cheaper coverage thanks to the new federal coronavirus relief law.

The Democratic senator on Monday held a news conference in Henderson to tout the benefits of the relief law signed by President Joe Biden last month.

Cortez Masto said the law increases subsidies for 60,000 Nevada residents who are already receiving them to help pay for their health insurance on the Silver State Health Insurance Exchange. She said the law also makes 40,000 others eligible for subsidies and anyone receiving unemployment benefits eligible for free monthly premiums and help paying copays and deductibles.

“What this means is that if you already have a plan, there’s a good chance it’s cheaper. And if you found coverage to be unaffordable up to this point, you could be eligible for discounted coverage or even a plan that is free to you,” she said.

Officials with Silver State Health Insurance Exchange said the new rates and assistance should begin showing up on the online system at the end of the month. The rates and assistance will be effective from May 1 through the end of the year.

There is usually a limited window at the end of the year when people can sign up for health plans, but a special enrollment period has opened from Feb. 15 through May 15 because of the pandemic.

Also Monday, Nevada began allowing anyone 16 and older to sign up for COVID-19 vaccines.

Officials in southern Nevada, where three-fourths of the state’s population lives, reported they had administered more than 1 million doses as of Monday. Statewide, more than 1.3 million doses have been administered.

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