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Local Insurer Offers Advice to Consumers on the State's New Health Insurance Exchange

If you're planning on enrolling in the state's new health insurance exchange, do your homework. 

That's the advice from Lynne Scalzo, Vice President for Business Strategy and Health Care Reform at Excellus BlueCross BlueShield. 

Scalzo says it's important to understand the various benefits and all the costs of the plans that are offered, such as deductibles and co-pays, not just the monthly premium. Make sure the health plan you chose will work with your doctor. Getting services from a physician outside of your health plan’s network can be expensive.  

Scalzo says you should also be on guard against solicitations for insurance coverage by unscrupulous people looking to cash in on unsuspecting consumers. “Really stay with things you’re familiar with, versus someone who sends you an email that you don’t know who they are, don’t know where it’s from, and don’t know the company. They might be pushing you to do something that’s either not correct, or that won’t get you where you need to be in terms of your enrollment and your subsidy.” 

Enrollment begins October 1, but you can register as late as mid-December for coverage to start January 1.  General enrollment for the individual market runs through March 31. 

Scalzo recommends taking that time to do the necessary research before investing in a health care plan.  

More information is available  at or

Beth Adams joined WXXI as host of Morning Edition in 2012 after a more than two-decade radio career. She was the longtime host of the WHAM Morning News in Rochester. Her career also took her from radio stations in Elmira, New York, to Miami, Florida.