Cape Gazette
http://capegazette.villagesoup.com/p/1029525

Health centers to help uninsured Delawareans gain affordable health coverage

Jul 15, 2013

Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius recently announced $338,656 in grant awards to three Delaware health centers operating 12 sites to enroll the uninsured in new health coverage options made available by the Affordable Care Act. In Delaware, health centers served 39,401 patients last year, 37 percent of whom were uninsured.

With these funds, the awardees expect to hire seven additional workers who will assist 9,890 Delawareans with enrollment into affordable health insurance coverage. Across the nation, 1,159 health centers will receive $150 million in grant awards.

“This investment will give Delaware neighborhoods and towns one more resource to help people understand their insurance options and enroll in affordable coverage,” Sebelius said.

With these awards, health centers will help consumers understand their coverage options in the new Health Insurance Marketplace. They will also help determine an individual’s eligibility for Medicaid, the Children’s Health Insurance Program and any financial help they can get, and enroll them in new affordable health coverage options.

The awards, issued by the Health Resources and Services Administration, complement and align with other federal efforts, such as the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services-funded Navigator program.

The announcement is part of the administration's larger effort to make applying for health coverage as easy as possible. The new, consumer-focused HealthCare.gov website and the 24-hour-a-day consumer call center are available to help Delawareans prepare for open enrollment and ultimately sign up for health coverage. These new tools will help Delawareans understand their coverage options and select the plan that best suits their needs when open enrollment in the new Health Insurance Marketplace begins Oct. 1.

“Delaware health centers are excited to help individuals in their communities take advantage of the benefits of new health insurance coverage options that start in January 2014,” said HRSA Administrator Mary Wakefield, PhD, RN. “Having trained, face-to-face assistance in enrollment from trusted resources at local health centers means that more Delawareans will get the help they need.”

For a list of health centers receiving this funding in all 50 states, go to www.hrsa.gov/about/news/2013tables/outreachandenrollment.

To learn more about the Affordable Care Act, visit www.HealthCare.gov. To learn more about HRSA’s Health Center Program, visit bphc.hrsa.gov/about/index.html.

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