Visiting Nurse Services of Iowa (VNS of Iowa) will be hosting the following local enrollment event to provide assistance to individuals enrolling in the health insurance marketplace, which is open through Dec. 15. Professionally trained and licensed health insurance marketplace navigators will serve as in-person resources for Iowans needing assistance with the health insurance marketplace. Additional events will be posted at as they are scheduled.

Ames: Nov. 14 and 28, 9:30 a.m. 3:30 p.m., Bethesda Lutheran Church, 1517 Northwestern Ave.

Appointments are strongly encouraged, and may be made by calling 515-288-1516. Walk-ins will be accepted; however, due to high demand, walk-ins will likely be rescheduled for a later date.

Navigators estimate the enrollment process to take about 1.5 hours, provided individuals bring all necessary documentation:

• Social Security Number(s) (or document numbers for legal immigrants)

• Birth date(s)

• Employer and income information for every member of household needing coverage (pay stubs or W-2 forms-Wage and Tax Statements)

• Policy numbers for any current health insurance plans covering household members of your household (if applicable)

• Information about any health insurance available from employer(s) (if applicable)

Those eligible for Medicaid and hawk-i may apply at any time of the year and are not restricted to qualifying events outside of the open enrollment period. VNS of Iowa also offers in-person application assistance for these programs, and in-person interpreters may be available as well. Regular check-ups, immunizations, doctor and dentist visits, hospital care, mental health services, prescriptions and more are covered. Appointments for assistance enrolling in hawk-i may be made by calling 515-558-6243.

While the uninsured rate has fallen to the lowest level on record, there are still many Americans who remain uninsured and experience health and financial hardships resulting from lack of coverage. A key reason people remain uninsured is that they don’t know about the options that exist to help them obtain coverage. Experts continue to find that nearly half of uninsured adults are unaware of the financial assistance available to help pay for health insurance, even though about 85 percent of Marketplace-eligible uninsured Americans could qualify for financial help.