By Tom Travis
Genesee Health Plan (GHP) has received a three-year federal Navigator Cooperative Agreement Award of $219,492 from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). The grant will fund what are called Support Navigators in Federally-facilitated Exchanges to help people access a variety of federally-funded health care services, including Obamacare and Medicare during open enrollment periods.
“Support Navigators assist with application submission for Medicare, HealthCare.Gov Marketplace, and Medicaid coverages including other state-funded programs such as Food Assistance Program (FAP), State Emergency Relief (SER), Daycare Assistance. They also provide referrals to other community resources for identified needs such as clothing, transportation, food pantries, and personal hygiene needs.
For those seeking health coverage, Support Navigators are able to provide a personalized experience for each client by offering assistance via phone, virtually or in-person. Clients are provided with a variety of health care options and the Support Navigator helps identify what the client qualifies for and what health needs the client has and provides them with all information needed to make an informed decision,” according to Shannon Ciszek, Communications Coordinator at GHP.
GHP received this grant award before, from 2019 to 2021. It will use the grant to help Genesee, Saginaw and Bay County residents enroll in health care coverage during 2022. GHP is one of 60 recipients nationwide and one of three organizations in Michigan to receive the grant for 2021-2024.
The other two Michigan recipients are Arab Community Center for Economic & Social Services (ACCESS) awarded $2,640,159 and Easter Michigan University awarded $435,784. The largest award nationwide went to Georgia Association for Primary Health Care, Inc. (GAPHC) for $1,945,303.
Health care enrollment services provided for 2022 are supported by the Navigator Cooperative Agreement Award from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) as part of a financial award totaling $219,492, with 52 per cent funded by CMS and HHS ($219,492) of total program costs and 48% ($199,538) funded by non-governmental sources with a total project cost of $419,030.
“Our priority is to make sure community members know what their health care coverage options are and to enroll in coverage that best fits their needs,” said GHP President and CEO Jim Milanowski. “The CMS grant will allow us to continue our work with the previous grant in reaching individuals and families who face barriers to enrolling and accessing health care coverage.”
Additionally, GHP will offer enrollment services for the following health care coverage options, with staff available to help residents determine which plan to enroll in.
- HealthCare.gov: Open Enrollment through HealthCare.gov runs Nov. 1 to Jan. 15, 2022, for people to shop for health insurance. For health care coverage to be active January 1, 2022, you must select and enroll into a plan by Dec. 15, 2021. For health care coverage to be active Feb. 1, 2022 you must select and enroll into a plan by Jan. 15, 2022.
- Medicare: Open Enrollment began Oct. 15 and runs through Dec. 7.
- Healthy Michigan (Medicaid): Healthy Michigan is a Medicaid program offered through the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS). Visit GHP’s website for more information about Healthy Michigan. Enrollment is year-round.
- Genesee Health Plan: Genesee County residents who are at least 19 years old, do not have health insurance and meet the eligibility requirements may qualify for Genesee Health Plan coverage. Visit GHP’s website for more information about its health plan. Enrollment is year-round.
Anyone who needs to enroll in health care coverage is encouraged to call GHP’s office at 844-232-7740 to schedule an over the phone, virtual or in-person appointment. GHP’s office is located at 2171 S. Linden Road in Flint. More information is available at www.geneseehealthplan.org. GHP staff can also help individuals understand if they qualify for cost savings on premiums, Medicaid, or Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP).
EVM Managing Editor Tom Travis can be reached at email@example.com.