State Health Updates
- California – Covered California’s Board of Directors announced the appointment of Jessica Altman as its new Chief Executive Officer. Altman currently serves as the insurance commissioner for the Pennsylvania Insurance Department. She will join Covered California having played key roles in the Obama administration during the early implementation of the ACA, and as the chair of the Pennsylvania Health Insurance Exchange Authority, where she led the establishment of Pennsylvania’s state-based marketplace. Congratulations Jessica!
- Connecticut – Access Health CT, the state’s official health insurance marketplace, announced a special enrollment period for the Covered Connecticut Program, which provides health insurance at no cost to Connecticut residents who meet eligibility requirements. The Covered Connecticut Program pays the customer’s portion of the monthly premium directly to their insurance company. The program also covers the cost-sharing amounts they would typically have to pay with a health insurance plan, such as co-pays, co-insurance, deductibles and maximum out-of-pocket costs. This special enrollment period runs now through June 30, and coverage begins on the first of the month following enrollment.
- Lousiana – The Louisiana Department of Health announced its intent to contract with five MCOs after completing a review of proposals. Contract awards are not final until the completion of the 14-day protest period and the resolution of any protests. The 14-day period begins on February 12, 2022 and ends on February 25, 2022.
- New York – NY State of Health, the official health insurance marketplace, announced that enrollment assisters will be available throughout February and March at several COVID-19 vaccination clinics to answer questions about health coverage and provide free enrollment help. These clinics will be established in areas where vaccination rates are low and the uninsured rate is higher than other parts of the state, especially in communities of color. Consumers must enroll in a health plan through NY State of Health by March 15 for coverage starting April 1.
- Nevada – The Nevada Department of Human Services is proposing changes to the state Medicaid alternative benefits plan, allowing community health worker, doula, and licensed pharmacist services. The change is expected to become effective July 1, 2022
- North Carolina – The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services, in partnership with North Carolina’s historically Black colleges and universities, is hosting a mental health summit to assess the mental health needs of minority students on campus and the effects of the impacts from the COVID-19 pandemic. The summit, Peeling Back the Layers on Minority Mental Health, will be held on Wednesday, February 23, from noon to 3 p.m.
- Oklahoma – SoonerCare, the state’s Medicaid program, hosted three virtual town hall meetings on February 18 to provide enrollees and their family members with the opportunity to shared feedback with the Oklahoma Health Care Authority on improving healthcare. Members were able to ask questions and participate in discussions and polls on topics related to tobacco use, obesity, teen pregnancy and other social determinants of health such as living and work conditions.
- Pennsylvania – The Wolf administration established a doula care pilot program to support individuals who are pregnant while incarcerated at the State Correctional Institution (SCI) Muncy. Funded through the Tuttleman Foundation, the doula pilot at SCI Muncy is a first step in expanding pregnancy and parenting supports for individuals incarcerated in Department of Corrections facilities.