Health Insurance – Beyond the First Eight Months
Right now, many refugees get short-term health insurance called Refugee Medical Assistance (RMA). It is available for up to eight months. Some refugees may be eligible for Medicaid or the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) which is available for several years.
Thanks to the health care law, the health insurance landscape for refugees and other Americans is changing for the better in 2014. Many refugees, who could only get eight months of insurance through RMA, will be able to get ongoing health insurance through the Marketplace.
How to Get Health Insurance at the Marketplace
The Affordable Care Act (ACA) creates the Marketplace to help people shop for health insurance at lower costs. The Marketplace also helps you find out if you are eligible for programs like Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP).
No matter where you live, you will only need to fill out a single application on the Marketplace. You can access the Marketplace online at www.healthcare.gov, by phone at 1-800-318-2596, or by sending a paper application in the mail to:
Health Insurance Marketplace
Department of Health and Human Services
465 Industrial Blvd.
London, KY 40750
You can also get help with your application by going to a Navigator. See a list of several Navigators in your area. If you don’t see your State listed, get more information about which marketplace can help you.
ACA Resources for Refugees
ORR wants to make sure that refugees and service providers know how to navigate the health insurance landscape. ORR developed the following tools to help with outreach and enrollment activities:
ORR created a fact sheet to explain immigration statuses that qualify for Marketplace coverage including Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Plan. Knowing about eligible immigration status can help you with your ACA outreach and enrollment activities. View the fact sheet.
For more information about immigration documents that may be required or used, depending on the individual situation, visit the Marketplace at https://www.healthcare.gov/immigration-status-and-the-marketplace/.
Marketplace Consumer Application
The Health Insurance Marketplace will help you get coverage that meets your needs and fits your budget. Open enrollment began October 1, 2013.
You can apply for health coverage, compare all your options, and enroll in a plan in one streamlined application through the Marketplace. ORR collaborated with the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to translate the application into languages relevant to the refugee community. These translations can serve as training tools for completing the application. Below is a list of some of the languages available::
For resources available in additional languages, see the CMS webpage.
Information about Refugees for Navigators
ORR developed a training curriculum designed to educate Navigators and Certified Application Counselors (CACs) about refugees and other vulnerable populations. The purpose of the curriculum is to ensure these populations have equal access to benefits under the ACA. The curriculum contains the following:
Navigators and CACs may find this chart listing refugee languages by county helpful.