Frequently asked questions about health insurance
coverage options in Nevada
From 2015 through 2019, Nevada Health Link was a state-run exchange that used Healthcare.gov for enrollment (in 2014, Nevada had a fully state-run exchange, but it was plagued with technical problems). But starting in the fall of 2019, Nevada residents began enrolling through Nevada Health Link, as the state is no longer using HealthCare.gov.
Read our overview of the Nevada health insurance marketplace – including news updates and exchange history.
The open enrollment window for individual/family health coverage runs from November 1 to January 15 in Nevada. This window applies both on-exchange and off-exchange.
Outside of open enrollment, a qualifying event is necessary to enroll or make changes to your coverage.
Learn more about enrollment in our comprehensive guides:
For 2022 coverage, there are seven insurers that offer exchange plans in Nevada, including two newcomers:
- Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield (HMO Colorado/HMO Nevada)
- Friday Health Plans
- Health Plan of Nevada
- Silver Summit
- Aetna Health (new for 2022)
- Hometown Health Plan (new for 2022)
There are a total of 127 plans available through the exchange for 2022, up from 50 in 2021 and just 27 in 2020.
Anthem had exited the exchange at the end of 2017, but rejoined in the fall of 2019, for plans effective in 2020. And SelectHealth and Friday Health Plans both joined the exchange for 2021.
For the Nevada individual health insurance market, average rates increased by about 4.2% in the exchange for 2022, and by an average of about 4.9% for off-exchange plans.
Open enrollment for 2022 health plans ran from November 1, 2021 to January 15, 2022 in Nevada. Enrollment during that window reached a record-high, with 101,411 people signing up for coverage during open enrollment.
During open enrollment for 2021 coverage, 81,903 people enrolled in plans through Nevada Health Link. That was up from 77,410 people the year before, but still lower than enrollment had been for 2018, when 91,003 people had enrolled in plans through Nevada’s exchange.
Nevada is one of only a handful of states where exchange enrollment increased every year from 2014 through 2018. In that first year, fewer than 36,000 people enrolled, and the exchange struggled with technology problems.
In 2015, after switching to HealthCare.gov’s enrollment platform, Nevada’s exchange enrollment more than doubled, to above 73,000 enrollees. Enrollment initially peaked in 2018, and then declined for a few years. But it grew to a new record high in 2022, driven in large part by the American Rescue Plan’s subsidy enhancements.
Nevada expanded Medicaid in 2014, which has played a significant role in reducing the state’s uninsured population.
As of February 2022, average monthly enrollment for Nevada Medicaid/CHIP had grown by nearly 515,000 people since late 2013 – a 155% increase (the highest percentage increase in the country).
Enrollment in Medicaid plans had plateaued by 2017, and had remained fairly steady until 2020, when the COVID pandemic resulted in widespread job losses and the Families First Coronavirus Response Act paused Medicaid eligibility redeterminations until the end of the COVID public health emergency, which was still ongoing as of 2022.
Read more about Medicaid expansion and eligibility for Medicaid in Nevada.
Although the federal government relaxed the rules for short-term health plans in 2018, states may continue to impose tighter regulations. So short-term health plans in Nevada have maximum terms of 185 days, and continue to be nonrenewable, as those are the state’s rules.
(In states that don’t impose stricter limits, the new federal rules allow short-term plans to have initial terms of up to 364 days, and total duration, including renewals, of up to three years).
Read more about short-term health insurance in Nevada.
In 2013, a fifth of Nevada residents (20.7% of the population) were uninsured. By 2018, that number had fallen by nearly 46%, to 11.2%. But it increased slightly in 2019 (as was the case in most other states), growing to 11.4%.
Medicaid enrollment in Nevada increased by 155% from 2013 to February 2022 – the highest percentage increase in the US. Clearly, the expansion of Medicaid has played a major role in reducing the number of Nevada residents without health insurance.
More than 100,000 Nevada residents have coverage through Nevada Health Link (the state-run ACA-created exchange) as of 2022. All of them have coverage for the ACA’s essential health benefits, and most of them are also receiving subsidies to make their premiums (and for some people, out-of-pocket costs) more affordable.
In 2010, Nevada’s U.S. Senators were split on healthcare reform. Democratic Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid voted yes and was an ardent supporter of the ACA from the get-go. But Republican John Ensign voted against the ACA. In the U.S. House, two Nevada Democrats – Dina Titus and Shelley Berkley – voted yes, while one Republican – Dean Heller – voted no.
Reid did not run for reelection in 2016, and was replaced in the Senate by Democrat Catherine Cortez Masto, who supports the ACA. Jacky Rosen, also a Democrat, is now the Junior Senator from Nevada and is also a strong supporter of the ACA.
In the U.S. House, Nevada’s delegation now includes three Democrats and one Republican.
At the state level as of 2022, Nevada has a Democratic governor (who supports the ACA and worked to protect it from being overturned in the California v. Texas/Texas v. Azar lawsuit; ultimately the ACA was upheld by the Supreme Court in that case, in 2021), and a Democratic majority in both the Senate and the Assembly.
Former Governor Brian Sandoval, a Republican, was generally opposed to the ACA because of “the individual mandate it places on citizens, the increased burden on businesses and concerns about access to health care.” But in 2012, Sandoval became the first Republican governor to accept federal funding to expand Medicaid starting in 2014, and he continued to urge the Trump administration to ensure that any changes to the ACA wouldn’t pull the rug out from under the hundreds of thousands of people who had gained coverage in Nevada as a result of the ACA — mostly via Medicaid expansion.
Nevada was also the only state with a Republican governor that opted to run its own exchange in 2014. Unfortunately, Nevada Health Link ran into crippling technical problems early in open enrollment in the fall of 2013, and never fully recovered. In May 2014, shortly after the first open enrollment period ended, the Nevada exchange board unanimously agreed to switch to Healthcare.gov’s enrollment platform but continue to exist as a supported state-based marketplace. That is the structure Nevada used until the fall of 2019, when they switched back to using the much improved Nevada Health Link platform.
- Silver State Health Exchange
Information about exchange planning and start-up operations
- State Exchange Profile: Nevada
The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation overview of Nevadaʼs progress toward creating a state health insurance exchange.
- Nevada Governorʼs Office for Consumer Health Assistance
Serves all residents with health-related issues; benefits, denials, insured, uninsured, worker’s compensation, and hospital billing.
(702) 486-3587 / Toll-Free: 1-888-333-1597 (nationwide)