By Mountain Family Health Centers
Mountain Family’s Outreach and Enrollment team is breathing a big sigh of relief. The five team members not only successfully signed up residents for health coverage during a shortened enrollment period this winter, they dramatically increased the number of people receiving enrollment assistance. The team signed up 1,160 residents for private insurance, Medicaid, or CHP+ (Child Health Plan Plus). That’s approximately double the number of people who received assistance from Mountain Family during open enrollment a year ago.
Silvia Santana is Mountain Family’s Outreach and Enrollment Manager, and says she’s impressed by how her team buckled down to meet demand during the shortened enrollment period. They started early, reaching out to community organizations before enrollment began. Their efforts paid off, with more appointments in November compared to last winter. Most team members worked overtime and on weekends during enrollment, driving long hours across Mountain Family’s service area. Additional helpers during enrollment events included Billing Department all-stars Reyna De Los Santos and Myrna Fletchall.
Eagle, Garfield, and Pitkin Counties played a big role supporting Mountain Family during enrollment, providing office space, internet access, event planning, and even coordinating some media interviews. Santana worked with Mountain Family’s Development Team this winter to expand outreach, and reports that social media posts and radio and TV interviews seemed to have the biggest reach. Santana appreciates the assistance of Spanish-language radio station La Tricolor for getting the word out, as well as KDNK, Aspen Public Radio, and Grassroots TV.
Of those enrolled by Mountain Family this winter, 788 purchased private insurance plans through the online exchange Connect for Health Colorado. 264 signed up for coverage through Medicaid and 108 for CHP+, or Child Health Plan Plus. Although Mountain Family provides excellent, integrated care for Medicaid patients, Santana and her team are not allowed to suggest that new enrollees make an appointment with Mountain Family providers. Enrollment for 2018 health coverage ended on December 15th, and residents had until January 12th to purchase a plan for coverage starting February 1st. Residents are still able to enroll in coverage if they’ve had a qualified life event, such as loss of coverage, having a child, or getting married. Connect for Health Colorado has more information on qualifying life events.