Post-enrollment workbooks available!

Workbook_coverThis workbook is a take-home, interactive resource for the newly enrolled. It covers topics that enrollment assisters may not have time to cover during the enrollment appointment, such as how to find a primary care provider, how to make your first appointment, and even how to make a budget. People can fill in the workbook with their own information so they have all of their important health coverage information in one place. Download the workbook here.


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GHF heads to Savannah

Photo Nov 06, 10 44 15 AMGeorgians for a Healthy Future hit the road again recently, this time to Savannah! Along with the Georgia Budget & Policy Institute and the Chatham County Safety Net Planning Council, we hosted Coverage and Access to Care: A Local Focus on Savannah.  The event provided the opportunity to have a roundtable discussion about the health and health care needs of people in Georgia’s coastal region. We were joined by representatives from local hospitals, insurers, non-profit organizations, enrollment assisters, and interested Savannah residents for the gathering.

Guided by the chart book, the group had a dynamic discussion about how we could make Georgia’s Medicaid program work better for those who are already enrolled, as well as the benefits of expanding it to cover Georgians in the coverage gap. It was clear the attendees were eager to talk about improving coverage and access to care by closing Georgia’s coverage gap.

Our conversation also touched on the open enrollment period and the needs of consumers enrolling through the health insurance Marketplace (aka healthcare.gov). GHF highlighted our new toolkit and Health Insurance User’s Manual as tools to help Savannah-area consumers get enrolled, stay enrolled, and effectively use their coverage.

This roundtable event gave us the opportunity to learn from the Savannah stakeholders, meet new partners, and identify areas where we can work together to improve Georgia’s health care system.  We look forward to returning to Savannah soon to build on this visit.


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New publication: An Enrollment Toolkit

ghf_toolkit_160x600Georgians for a Healthy Future is excited to release our new enrollment toolkit! The toolkit is a comprehensive compilation of fact sheets, neatly organized, that are designed to walk consumers through each step of the enrollment process – from how to get health insurance (enrollment) to how to use health insurance once they have it (post enrollment).

 

 

[embeddoc url=”http://healthyfuturega.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/Toolkit.pdf”]

 

 

 

GHF_5_pcpinoutetworkNeed more information like this? You’re in luck! GHF has created the GEAR Network for people just like you. GEAR is the new central hub of resources for Georgia’s enrollment assisters and community partners that are working with people to educate them on their health and health coverage options. We’ll send out weekly emails full of local resources and the information you need to know through OE3 and beyond. For more information on GEAR, check out this presentation.

 

[embeddoc url=”http://healthyfuturega.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/GEAR-Webinar-Presentation_Final.pptx” viewer=”microsoft”]

 

 


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Getting ready For Open Enrollment 2016 (OE3)

Who, what, when, where and why

By Pranay Rana

 

DSC_0901Pranay is GHF’s Consumer Education and Enrollment Specialist. A certified application counselor, he assists consumers with enrollment into health insurance through the Marketplace. Pranay can also help you once you have enrolled with questions about how your coverage works. To set up a meeting with Pranay you can email him or give him a call at 404-567-5016 x4. 

 

NeedHelp2_tempOpen Enrollment 2016 (OE3) is less than 10 days away! Open enrollment is an annual period when individuals and families can choose from a variety of coverage options in the marketplace, apply for tax credits, and purchase a health plan that best meets their needs. Consumers can get 24/7 over-the-phone enrollment assistance via the Health Insurance Marketplace at 1-800-318-2596 or can find local in-person assistance at localhelp.healthcare.gov.  Individuals and families with incomes between 100% and 400% of the 2015 federal poverty level (FPL) may be eligible to receive financial assistance to help pay for their monthly premiums (see the chart below for what FPL means in real dollars). Consumers with lower incomes  (between 100% and 250% of the FPL) may be eligible for additional help with out-of-pocket costs if they choose a “silver” plan.  In 2015, 9 out of 10 Georgians who enrolled into marketplace plans were able to access tax credits. Consumers who do not qualify for subsidies may still be able to purchase plans through the marketplace at a full price.

 

So, when does my coverage start?

 

Coverage Dates Enrollment Deadlines
January 1, 2016 December 15, 2015
February 1, 2016 January 15, 2016
March 1, 2016 January 31, 2016

 

 FAQ_tempSubsidies and Reconciliation Requirements

 

The marketplace will discontinue subsidies for those consumers who did not fulfill their tax filing requirements for 2014 in order to reconcile their income and subsidies at the end of the year. Consumers are advised to fulfill their tax filing requirements every year and call the marketplace or local assisters for help if subsidies are being dropped without any legitimate reasons. Consumers who do not qualify for subsidies because their income is too low are also advised to obtain an Exemption Certificate Number (ECN)  to avoid tax penalties.

 

What do I need to do to renew my existing plan?

You may simply call the marketplace for 2016 application renewal if you need to change plans for 2016 or update your information. If you are happy with your existing plan and have no updates to make then you do not need to do anything. The marketplace will simply auto-renew your application for 2016.

 

What if I need help?

 

 

Federal Poverty Level Table, 2015

Family Size 100% 250% 400%
1 $11,770 $29,425 $47,080
2 $15,930 $39,825 $63,720
3 $20,090 $50,225 $80,360
4 $24,250 $60,625 $97,000
5 $28,410 $71,025 $113,640
6 $32,570 $81,425 $130,280
7 $36,730 $91,825 $146,920
8 $40,890 $102,225 $160,360

 

 


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UGA’s State of Public Health Conference: Featuring GHF

SOPH 9.15Last week, GHF was on the road again traveling to Athens for UGA’s annual State of Public Health conference. The SOPH conference is a chance for public health researchers, practitioners, and students to share and learn about the newest public health initiatives and research happening across Georgia. We were excited to be featured as a presenter among other experts, advocates, and leaders in Georgia’s public health domain.

In a workshop dedicated to the Affordable Care Act, GHF teamed up with Georgia Watch to talk about Marketplace enrollment efforts in Georgia.  The presentation was based on GHF’s “Getting Georgia Covered” report, which explored the successes and barriers to outreach and enrollment efforts in Open Enrollment 2. We also previewed the upcoming open enrollment period, which starts on Sunday, Nov. 1, 2015, and advocated for closing Georgia’s coverage gap.

The other presenters in the workshop, including another presentation from our partner Georgia Watch, comprehensively covered the new ACA requirement for hospitals to complete a community health needs assessment (CHNA) of their service area every 2-3 years and how that is being implemented in Georgia. The workshop generated some excellent questions and constructive conversation about these two very different aspects of the ACA.

[embeddoc url=”http://healthyfuturega.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/unpackingtheaffordablecareactfinal-151007221947-lva1-app6891.pptx” viewer=”microsoft”]


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New illustrated Medicaid resource


12_Percent Uninsured GA MapGeorgians for a Healthy Future and the Georgia Budget and Policy Institute are proud to release our joint publication: Understanding Medicaid in Georgia and the Opportunity to Improve It. Inside you will find infographics, new data, and compelling charts that simplify the complex issue of Medicaid in Georgia. 

 

Part one explains who gets Medicaid in Georgia, how Medicaid protects Georgians during economic downturns, how Medicaid controls costs in the state, and more.

 

Part two outlines Georgia’s opportunity to close the coverage gap.  Here you’ll find out what Georgia’s health insurance coverage gap is, how we can use Medicaid to close it, and who stands to benefit detailed by job sector, demographics, and veteran status.

 10_Coverage Gap

Part three details economic and social benefits of closing the coverage gap. Why is closing the coverage gap a good deal for Georgia and the state’s economy? What are the savings other states realize by closing the gap? How does coverage affect a person’s financial and physical health? 

 

Download the chart book here.


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GEAR up for OE3!

Do you or does your organization work directly with consumers to help get them covered? Do people in your community come to you with questions about how to make sense of their health insurance? If so, GEAR is for you! Please join us for a webinar to introduce the new Georgia Enrollment Assistance Resource Network — GEAR! GEAR is the new central hub of resources for Georgia’s enrollment assisters and stakeholders who work to educate people on their health and health coverage options. GEAR is full of handouts, interactive consumer tools, important updates, and other materials that will help enrollment assisters and community organizations better educate Georgians on health insurance enrollment, health insurance literacy, and more.

 

Want to learn more about GEAR and how you and/or your organization can benefit?  Join us on October 19th for a webinar where we will demonstrate how to access GEAR and review some of the materials that can be found there. We will also get your feedback about other resources you would like to see included on GEAR in the future. GEAR is built to help more Georgians connect to health coverage and we want it to work for you!

 

You can register for the October 19th GEAR webinar here.


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New resource! Getting Georgia Covered: Best Practices, Lessons Learned and Policy Recommendations from the Second Open Enrollment Period

GHF_enrollment_stickerNew health insurance opportunities created through the Affordable Care Act (ACA ) have led to historic reductions in the nation’s uninsured rate. Here in Georgia, more than half a million consumers signed up for health insurance during the open enrollment period that ended this past February, known as OE 2.

 

These strong enrollment numbers mean that more Georgia consumers can access the health care services they need and enjoy enhanced financial security for themselves and their families. The reduction in our state’s uninsured rate, although smaller than that of the nation as a whole, also has positive implications for the vitality of local health care systems and communities throughout Georgia.

 

Too many Georgians, however, remain uninsured, either because

 

  • they are unaware that there are coverage options that can meet their needs and budget
  • face cultural, linguistic, financial, or other barriers to coverage; or
  • fall into the “coverage gap” that was created when Georgia declined to expand Medicaid as authorized under the ACA

 

The goals of this report are

 

  • to explain the role of in-person assistance on enrollment outcomes and consumers’ experiences
  • to explore best practices that helped achieve robust enrollment in Georgia
  • to identify any common challenges or barriers to enrollment that Georgia consumers faced during OE2
  • to highlight promising strategies and approaches to reach the remaining uninsured who qualify for affordable health insurance
  • to put forth policy recommendations that can help facilitate a positive experience for health care consumers, both for those who are newly enrolled and for those who remain uninsured.

 

You can download and read the report below.

[embeddoc url=”http://healthyfuturega.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/05/EnrollBrief_ƒ-1.pdf” viewer=”google”]


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Getting Georgia covered: lessons learned from Open Enrollment 2

You’re Invited!

May 13, 2015 from 11:30 to 2:00

Georgia Railroad Freight Depot; Blue Room

Sign up here!

More than half a million Georgians signed up for health insurance during the open enrollment period that ended this past February (OE2). These strong enrollment numbers mean that more Georgians have access to the health care services they need and the peace of mind that comes from knowing that they are covered. What drove this success story for health care consumers in Georgia? Please join us for a conversation with representatives of the organizations most active in OE2 to learn lessons about their strategies, successes, and challenges that you can apply to your work. After their presentations, you will have the opportunity to ask your most pressing questions about health coverage in Georgia.  Lunch will be provided.

 

Panelists

Enroll America: Danté McKay, Georgia State Director

GHF: Whitney Griggs, Consumer Education Specialist

InsureGA: Sarah Sessoms, Executive Director

SEEDCO:  Lisa Stein, Vice President Work and Family Supports

US Dept. of Health & Human Services: Dr. Pamela Roshell, Region 4 Director

While this is a free event, please RSVP so we can order enough food.


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Accessing preventive services: what consumers need to know

coverageDid you know that thanks to the Affordable Care Act, you can receive certain preventive services at absolutely no cost? It’s true! One of the key requirements of the ACA is that insurance companies must cover recommended preventive services at no cost to the consumer – even if you haven’t met your deductible. These include services such as mammograms, annual physicals, colonoscopies, well-woman exams, cholesterol screenings, tobacco cessation, and many more. Click here for a full list of the preventive services that must be covered by all insurance companies. There is also an additional list of required services for women and a separate one for children. It’s important to take advantage of these no-cost preventive services to keep you and your family healthy. Evidence shows that preventive services can save lives and improve health by identifying illnesses earlier, managing them more effectively, and treating them before they become complicated and debilitating conditions.

If you have any questions about your insurance, please contact our Consumer Education Specialist, Whitney Griggs by email or at 404-567-5016 x 5

 


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