beWellnm offers free counselors for anyone needing assistance with health insurance
If you’re in need of health insurance for either yourself, your family, or your small business, beWellnm wants to make sure that you take part in the opportunity to get counseling on what might be the best option for you. beWellnm is the name for the New Mexico Health Insurance exchange set up in 2013 under the Affordable Care Act. It’s for New Mexicans who don’t have access to health insurance through their work, their spouse, or their parents. “Our mission is to guide, educate, and more importantly, see if New Mexicans qualify for the subsidies that are available,” explains Veronica Reyes, NM outreach manager at beWellnm. “We find that people are just not aware of that. Depending on your annual income and family size you can have access to subsidies that help pay for your premium and that’s what makes it affordable.”
From November 1 to December 15, open enrollment is available to everyone and coverage starts on January 1. However, if there is a life changing event—job loss, reaching the age of 26 and not qualifying for parental insurance, or getting married or divorced—enrollment is open 60 days from after the event. “The time that we provide is completely free of charge to the consumer and they can come see us as many times as they need to,” says Veronica, who explains that brokers get compensation from health insurance companies. “Sometimes people need time to talk to their families about what is the best option for them. Talking to a counselor helps them with all details. If you’re not aware, you may not know how you could save money.”
Veronica cites her own story as proof. “It’s human nature to look for the best deal and least expensive, but my counselor pointed out that I have young children who naturally get sick more often. He showed me how, by paying 10 to 15 dollars a month more, every time we went to the doctor it would be less. I would have never paid attention to that.” Own a small business? You’re in luck. Small businesses don’t have to wait for open enrollment, and see a 50 percent tax credit on the premiums for the first two years. Plus, it helps a business keep the good employees.
“The talented employees, who took time to build up their expertise in your business, now will stay because of the benefits,” Veronica points out. “Take advantage of meeting with someone, because it is complex. There are people available and willing to help you navigate through it, and they stay up to date year-by-year to know the changes. Let them be your guide.”
Counselors, agents, and brokers are available throughout the state. Just enter in your zip code at beWellnm.com and make an appointment.