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Commonwealth of Virginia
Office of the Attorney General

Mark Herring
Attorney General

202 North Ninth Street
Richmond, Virginia 23219


For media inquiries only, contact:  
Charlotte Gomer, Press Secretary
Phone: (804)786-1022 
Mobile: (804) 512-2552
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


~ New report shows coronavirus could have forced more than 27 million Americans to lose health insurance; Virginians who have lost or could lose their jobs because of COVID-19 should check their options on HealthCare.Gov ~

RICHMOND (May 14, 2020) – Attorney General Mark R. Herring is continuing to urge any Virginians who have lost or could lose their jobs due to the COVD-19 health crisis to evaluate their insurance options to make sure that they remain covered during this unprecedented national health crisis. A new report estimates that at least 27 million Americans have lost their job-based health coverage because of the economic effects of the coronavirus. Additionally, the report says that 79% of those who have lost their coverage will likely qualify for financial assistance through Healthcare.gov.


Virginians who have lost or could lose their employer-sponsored healthcare coverage because of job-loss due to COVID19 could qualify for health insurance coverage through a Special Enrollment Period on HealthCare.Gov. More than 500,000 Virginians have filed for unemployment benefits with the Virginia Employment Commission since the start of the pandemic and more than 307,000 are now receiving benefits. Some Virginians may even be eligible for all or part of their out of pocket costs to be covered as well.


“Unfortunately, we continue to see COVID-19 related job loss in Virginia and this means that hundreds of thousands of Virginians may have also lost their job-related health insurance,” said Attorney General Herring. “I am urging any Virginian who has lost their job to check HealthCare.Gov and see if they are eligible for a special enrollment period. While it is always important to have healthcare coverage, it is even more critical during a public health crisis for your own health and safety, and for the health and safety of your families and communities.”


If you or someone else in your household has lost employer-sponsored healthcare coverage either in the last 60 days or expects to lose coverage in the next 60 days you may qualify for a Special Enrollment Period. Financial assistance may be available for Virginians to help reduce or even eliminate out of pocket payments for premiums. You can go online to HealthCare.Gov and check to see whether you qualify for a Special Enrollment Period.


Last month, Attorney General Herring sent a letter to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and its Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services urging them to reconsider their shortsighted decision to deny a special enrollment period on HealthCare.Gov during the current worldwide pandemic. In the letter, Attorney General Herring and his colleagues argue that the federal government should take action to make it possible for Americans across the country who are facing uncertainty as a result of COVID-19 to obtain the healthcare coverage that they need during this critical times.


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