Covering Kids & Families-Wisconsin (CKF) today was awarded a federal Navigator grant of $997,863 under the Affordable Care Act to lead the 2016 Health Insurance Marketplace outreach and enrollment activities in 23 Wisconsin counties. CKF, with offices in Madison and Milwaukee, is based at the University of Wisconsin –Madison’s School of Human Ecology and affiliated with UW Extension.
CKF is the lead agency for its Navigator Collaborative and will subcontract with partners including Racine/Kenosha Community Action Agency in Kenosha, Gerald L. Ignace Indian Health Center and Black Health Coalition in Milwaukee, Portage County Department of Health and Human Services in Stevens Point, Partnership Community Health Center in Appleton and Wisconsin Free and Charitable Clinics, which will serve counties in the southern and central regions of the state.
These partners will provide in-person Marketplace enrollment assistance to 23 counties: Adams, Columbia, Dane, Grant, Green, Green Lake, Iowa, Jefferson, Kenosha, Lafayette, Marquette, Milwaukee, Outagamie, Portage, Racine, Richland, Rock, Sauk, Walworth, Waukesha, Waupaca, Waushara, and Winnebago. Last year, the CKF Navigator collaborative served 11 counties in southern Wisconsin.
“CKF brings a 12-year track record of providing outreach, education, program development, and assistance connecting residents to Medicaid, BadgerCare Plus (Wisconsin’s State Children’s Health Insurance Program – CHIP), the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA), and other programs that support health,” explains Caroline Gomez-Tom, Navigator Program Manager. “Having just completed a successful year of Navigator programming, CKF is well-positioned to expand the current service area and provide support to targeted areas where gaps exist and substantial vulnerable populations remain uninsured.”
The Navigator role includes helping consumers prepare applications to establish eligibility, financial assistance, and enrollment into a Marketplace plan. Navigators also provide outreach and education to raise awareness about health insurance options, and refer consumers to health insurance ombudsman and consumer assistance programs when necessary.
CKF, through the Navigator Collaborative, will provide direct consumer assistance along with education and outreach through workshops, phone banks, enrollment fairs and other events.
The goals of the upcoming enrollment period are to reach Wisconsin’s thousands of remaining uninsured people to connect them to new coverage, and to assure that those who gained coverage in the past years take the necessary steps to retain coverage. CKF programming also promotes health insurance literacy and consumer engagement.
Leading up to the coming open enrollment period, CKF is working with its partners to convene a statewide conference for enrollment assisters and community agencies in Green Lake on September 29-30, 2015.
Learn more about Covering Kids & Families-Wisconsin at www.ckfwi.org.