Pregnant Women and Special Enrollment Periods

New Speical Enrollment Period

There will be a special enrollment period from March 15 to April 30 for Marylanders who will have to pay the tax penalty this year because they didn’t realize federal law requires everyone to have health insurance will get extra time to enroll in a plan.  Learn more.

2014 Tax Preparation

Tax time may be a little more complicated for those who received financial assistance for their 2014 health insurance.  Here are some useful resources:  Maryland-specific information; background information and tools from HHS; and IRS tax tip sheets .  Find more information on the tax section of our Eligibility and Enrollment page.


Pregnant Women and Special Enrollment Periods

Pregnancy is not a ‘major life change’ that qualifies women to apply for coverage outside of the Open Enrollment Periods, or during what is called a Special Enrollment Period (SEP).  Yes, everyone is now required to have health insurance.  However, there are many reasons why women may fall the crack on this one and not just because half of all pregnancies are unplanned. 

  • Federal Level Action: Young Invincibles has taken the lead and last week sent a letter, signed by the Coalition and many others, to HHS Secretary Burwell asking for immediate guidance to clarify that would allow women who become pregnant to qualify for a SEP.  Read more from Vox.
  • State Level Action:  States are allowed to add to the life events that would qualify for a SEP.  Senators Boxer and Feinstein are urging their exchange, Covered California, to include pregnancy.  In Maryland we will be working with our Exchange and others to ensure that the women of our State get the pre-natal care that is critical for their own health and that of their newborn.  Interested in this issue or have a relevant story? Contact us.


Medicaid Budget

The House Appropriations Committee, Chaired by Maggie McIntosh (D), approved recommendations from the Health and Human Resources Subcommittee to:

Reverse proposed cuts in the Medicaid budget in a number of key areas we were concerned about. These include rates for provider payments and the eligibility levels for access to pregnancy-related care, as well as family planning services for low-income women.

Click to read more …


King v. Burwell

A lot is at stake in the King v. Burwell case challenging the payment of subsidies through the federally facilitated marketplaces.   Not only would millions of individuals be affected, but insurance carriers, community health centers, hospitals, insurance carriers, small businesses and many more would be negatively impacted.

The Coalition signed an amicus brief submitted by the National Women’s Law Center. Learn about other filings.

Oral Arguments were heard on March 4th, read a full transcript.

Want to learn more?

Read what’s at stake in King v. Burwell from Families USA.

View an interactive graphic on women at risk of losing affordable health insurance.

Learn the facts through the National Women’s Law Center’s Fact Sheet on the case.

Read the Commonwealth Fund series: King v. Burwell: What a Subsidy Shutdown Could Mean for Consumers

News Articles

Employed White Southerners Most Likely to Lose Coverage in Supreme Court Case 

Five Myths about King v. Burwell

Read a roundup of news stories by Kaiser Health News

Read an Op-Ed by Nancy K. Kaufman on the high stakes for women, children, and families in King v. Burwell, published March 5 on The Hill’s Congress Blog: Who’s at Stake in King v. Burwell?


2015 General Assembly

The 2015 General Assembly Session began on January 14th, 2015.  View the current bills we support.


Second Open Enrollment Period Ends  

Get all of the information here!

Click to read more …


2016 Maryland Health Connection Comments

The Maryland Health Benefits Exchange is now taking public comments for the 2016 proposed plan certification standards. 

Stakeholders and the public are invited to send comments to, and all comments are due by 5:00 p.m. on Monday, March 9, 2015.