Getting signed up: Cecilia from Arizona


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By Consumers Union on Thursday, December 19th, 2013

Cecilia Laspisa is self-employed and a few years away from Medicare eligibility. Because she has osteoporosis and sometimes gets migraine headaches, many insurance companies would not cover her. The one insurer who would charged her almost $600/month for coverage. Cecilia paid the high rates because she believes that health insurance is important.

After open enrollment for coverage under the Affordable Care Act began, Cecilia decided to look at her options on the marketplace. Cecilia lives in Arizona which chose to have the federal government run their marketplace at In late November she signed up on the website. Though she did not run into any glitches, some parts of the site were difficult to navigate so she called the 1-800 number to get the help that she needed. The person who helped her was very patient and worked through the problems Cecilia was having on the application.

Cecilia qualified for four different plans and chose one with an insurer she trusts. After subsidies, she is paying only $340.80 per month. Her health insurance costs were almost cut in half. Her new plan includes her primary care physician so she won’t have to change doctors. “I’m happy with it,” she said. “Even if I would have had to change my primary doctor that would have been fine, but I didn’t have to.”

“I feel that everybody should have insurance,” said Cecilia. “I am ecstatic that I’m not paying tons of money for my insurance and I’m telling everyone I know.”

Open enrollment continues until December 23 for consumers who would like coverage beginning January 1, and continues until March 31 for those who would like their coverage to begin later. Learn about your options at Consumer Reports’ Health Law Helper.


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