Tag Archives: Marketplace

Health care options for families

Bubble ChartOne of the “bubbles” in the child support bubble chart is health care coverage. In identifying family-centered strategies over the last four years, I have highlighted family health care needs. Through our medical support activities, the child support program has long had the responsibility to obtain private health insurance for the children in our caseload. Now we can play a critical role in providing information to both parents about the range of available health care options—for their children and for themselves.

Later this month, OCSE plans to launch two new fact sheet series to explain child support and health care connections under the Affordable Care Act and to address promising medical child support policies and practices under Title IV-D of the Social Security Act. Watch for them on our website, www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/css.

Starting Oct. 1, 2013, parents will be able to choose new affordable insurance options through a new Health Insurance Marketplace. There will be one application, called the “Health Insurance Marketplace Application for Health Coverage & Help Paying Costs,” that parents can use to apply for the new Health Insurance Marketplace, Medicaid, the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), and tax credits that will help pay for premiums. Parents may choose to use this application online, by phone, by mail, or on paper. In-person counselors and a toll-free phone line will be available to help them through every step of the process.

No matter what state they live in, families can get help as they apply for and choose new insurance options. Some states are setting up a state-based Marketplace; other states will work with the federal government in a State Partnership Marketplace; and the remaining states will have a federally facilitated Marketplace.

The Affordable Care Act authorizes states to expand Medicaid to adults under age 65 with income of up to 133 percent of the federal poverty level. This is approximately $15,280 for a single adult in 2013. The Act provides unprecedented federal funding for these states—the federal government will pay for 100 percent of the cost of coverage for newly eligible individuals through 2016, and pay no less than 90 percent of the cost subsequently.

No one plans to get sick or hurt, but most people need medical care at some point. Health insurance helps pay these costs. Help families find out how insurance works—and why it’s so important to have. Go to:  http://www.healthcare.gov/

 

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The child support program plays many roles in minority health

Three minority childrenTwo major health care dates are approaching rapidly: October 2013 when the Health Insurance Marketplace opens for enrollment and January 2014 when health coverage begins. Have you considered what this means to your program? Many of the families we serve might not realize that they are newly eligible for Medicaid and other state health insurance programs or that assistance is available to make health insurance more affordable. It’s important to educate families about coverage options and direct them to appropriate resources that will help them with the enrollment process.

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has resources to help states with their outreach campaigns around health care coverage. The resources offer brochures in several languages including Spanish, Chinese and Tagalog. The brochure provides ways for consumers to prepare for enrollment and offers important notes about the Health Insurance Marketplace. CMS has also conducted research on the most effective ways to communicate about the Marketplace to our customers. I encourage you to read “Talking about the Marketplace” to learn messages to use in your communication and outreach efforts to families.

In addition to work around health, we’re helping to improve access to and services for our Latino customers. The Administration for Children and Families (ACF) is hosting a Roundtable at the White House with Hispanic/Latino leaders later this month to discuss opportunities for collaboration with ACF programs, including child support. Latino service providers, advocates and researchers from across the country as well as key HHS and White House representatives are invited to participate in the Roundtable. Although discussions will center on increasing Latino access to human service programs like Head Start, Child Care, and other ACF programs, the Roundtable will also touch on the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and Latinos. The “lunch and learn” portion of the Roundtable will host an HHS official to discuss the impact of the ACA on the Latino community and offer ways we can help connect families and individuals to coverage.

For additional resources to help you engage with the Latino community, check out these resources:

Child Support Hispanic Outreach Toolkit

Spanish-language ACF Program Directory and Community & Faith-Based Guide to Resources

ACF newsletter dedicated to Latinos, Infόrmate. It provides information on ACF programs, outreach, resources, and employment opportunities.

 

 

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