Hi, everybody. Over the past year, more than 10 million Americans have gained the financial security and peace of mind that comes with health insurance. More than 7 million people enrolled in affordable coverage by visiting healthcare.gov or going to the marketplace in their State. On average, they're paying just $82 a month for coverage. For a lot of people, that's less than a cell phone bill or a cable bill. Insurance companies can no longer deny you coverage just because you have a preexisting condition, and they now have to cover free preventive care like checkups and mammograms.
If you missed your chance to get covered last year, here's the good news. Starting November 15, today, you can go online or call 1-800-318-2596 and get covered for 2015. And we've spent the last year improving and upgrading healthcare.gov to make it faster and easier to use.
If you already buy insurance through the online marketplace, now is the time to take a look at some of the new options for next year. You might be able to save more money or find a plan that fits your family's needs even better than the one you've got now. If you haven't signed up for insurance yet, this is your chance. Odds are, you'll qualify for tax credits to help you afford it.
But this window won't stay open forever. You only have 3 months to shop for plans, so it's worth starting right away. And it might make a big difference for your family's bottom line.
Last year, I got an e-mail from a woman named Amy Williams, in Augusta, Georgia. She and her husband are self-employed in the trucking business. For years, they paid about $1,200 a month for their health insurance. Then, they checked out healthcare.gov. They found a plan with coverage they liked, and it was way less expensive. She says that they've saved around $13,000 on their premiums this year alone.
Stories like Amy's are why we fought so hard to pass the Affordable Care Act: to help more families breathe a little easier. In part because this law is working, health care prices have grown at their slowest rate in nearly 50 years. And this year, insurance premiums for families who are covered through an employer grew at a rate tied for the lowest on record.
So spread the word. Tell your friends and family members to get covered. Talk to folks in your church or your classroom. Tell them to take a few minutes to check out healthcare.gov or cuidadodesalud.gov or call 1-800-318-2596. It can make a big difference in their lives. Let them know that it's easy, it's affordable, and that they have just 3 months, starting today, November 15, to sign up. Together, we can make sure that even more of America gets covered in the year ahead.
Thanks, and have a great weekend.