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Home Local Maryland Government Announcement Originally published April 25, 2013

LT. GOVERNOR BROWN ANNOUNCES LAUNCH OF HEALTH INSURANCE CONSUMER ASSISTANCE PROGRAM TO READY RESIDENTS AND SMALL EMPLOYERS FOR OPEN ENROLLMENT THROUGH MARYLAND HEALTH CONNECTION



LT. GOVERNOR BROWN ANNOUNCES LAUNCH OF HEALTH INSURANCE CONSUMER ASSISTANCE PROGRAM TO READY RESIDENTS AND SMALL EMPLOYERS FOR OPEN ENROLLMENT THROUGH MARYLAND HEALTH CONNECTION


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE


CONTACT:            
Jared Smith
Office: 410-260-3888
Cell: 443-370-6896


LT. GOVERNOR BROWN ANNOUNCES LAUNCH OF HEALTH INSURANCE CONSUMER ASSISTANCE PROGRAM TO READY RESIDENTS

AND SMALL EMPLOYERS FOR OPEN ENROLLMENT THROUGH MARYLAND HEALTH CONNECTION

 

Over 300 jobs to be created as Maryland Health Benefit Exchange selects six regional organizations to educate and enroll the

newly eligible through the Affordable Care Act

 

 

 

BALTIMORE, Md. (April 25, 2013) - Today Lt. Governor Anthony G. Brown joined the Maryland Health Benefit Exchange <http://marylandhbe.com/>  (MHBE) to announce the launch of its Connector Program with the award of an anticipated $24 million in grant funds to six organizations serving as consumer assistance and enrollment resources throughout the state.
 
“I’m proud to announce this important investment in Maryland’s health care system,” said Lt. Governor Brown. “By working together to implement the Affordable Care Act, we aren’t just helping Marylanders get the care they need, we’re also creating over 300 jobs across our state.”
 
Because of this important investment by the state and federal government, over 300 new jobs will be created to implement this important program across Maryland. These jobs will be filled in organizations across six regions of the state: Central, Capital, Western, Upper Eastern Shore, Lower Eastern Shore and Southern . These new health care navigators and assisters will work to meet the needs of individuals and small employers through outreach and education, eligibility determination, and enrollment into Medicaid and qualified health plans. This regional approach ensures that the needs of Maryland’s uninsured and underserved communities are met by providing in-person assistance as the new health insurance coverage options become available in October 2013.
 
The organizations selected and the counties they will serve are:
 

  • HealthCare Access Maryland (Central Region) - serving Baltimore City and Baltimore and Anne Arundel counties
    • 107 new jobs
  • Seedco, Inc. (Upper Eastern Shore Region) - serving Harford, Cecil, Kent, Queen Anne’s, Caroline, Talbot and Dorchester  counties
    • 25 new jobs
  • Worcester County Health Department (Lower Eastern Shore Region) - serving Worcester, Wicomico and Somerset counties
    • 17 new jobs
  • Montgomery County Department of Health and Human Services (Capital Region) - serving Montgomery and Prince George’s counties
    • 80 new jobs
  • Calvert Health Solutions (Southern Region) - serving Calvert, Charles and St. Mary’s Counties
    • 20 new jobs
  • Healthy Howard (Western Region) - serving Howard, Carroll, Frederick, Washington, Allegany and Garrett counties.
    • 57 new jobs


In addition to the six connector entities, nearly 50 subcontractors will support the outreach, education and enrollment efforts of navigators and in-person assisters throughout the state. These organizations include health departments, hospitals, health clinics, community-based organizations, homeless shelters, workforce development centers and faith-based organizations. The intent of the regional approach is to ensure that all populations are reached including those with limited English proficiency or disabilities and those that may be in underserved communities.
 
“Creating a customized outreach program for each region will allow the navigators to address the specific needs and resources of Marylanders throughout the state,” said Dr. Joshua M. Sharfstein, Secretary of the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene and Chair of the Board of the Maryland Health Benefit Exchange.
 
Each organization will be responsible for helping consumers learn about, apply for, and enroll in an appropriate health insurance product, including Medicaid, the Maryland Children’s Health Program, and subsidized and non-subsidized qualified health plans.
 
The connector entities will employ trained and certified navigators to counsel and enroll residents into qualified health plans and Medicaid through Maryland Health Connection <http://www.marylandhealthconnection.gov/> , the state-based insurance marketplace scheduled to open on October 1, 2013, as well as non-certified personnel, known as “assisters,” who will be trained to provide information, assistance and enrollment into Medicaid. Navigators and assisters will provide information about eligibility requirements for federal premium subsidies and cost-sharing assistance, and assess eligibility requirements for Medicaid and Maryland Children’s Health Program.
 
“The Connector Program is the result of a collaborative process over the past year involving stakeholders from across the state that strongly believe in the important role of outreach and enrollment,” said Rebecca Pearce, Executive Director, Maryland Health Benefit Exchange. “The regional approach will ensure that the local resources and infrastructure within the communities being served will be utilized to reach the uninsured and expand access to health care for many residents who have not had coverage in the past.”
 
Navigators and in-person assisters will provide referrals to appropriate agencies, including the Attorney General’s Health Education and Advocacy Unit (HEAU) and the Maryland Insurance Administration (MIA) for applicants and enrollees with grievances, complaints, questions or the need for other social services through the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene and the Department of Human Resources (Social Services).