Posted on May 2, 2013 by Arianne Slagle
Since most (all?) of our readers are not members of the press, I thought I would share some more resources from last week’s HCFANY press briefing. Posted above is a video put together by the good folks at New American Media, who co-hosted the event. Click below for copies of the presentations from the event.
Filed under: Health Disparities, Immigrants, Insurance Exchange, Uninsured | Tagged: disparities, HCFANY Events, Insurance Exchange | Comments Off
Posted on May 1, 2013 by Arianne Slagle
Written by guest blogger Lorraine Gonzalez-Camastra, Director of Health Policy for Children’s Defense Fund-NY and HCFANY Steering Committee Member
In T minus five months, New York State will begin enrollment through its new Health Benefit Exchange. The goal on October 1st, 2013 will be to enroll as many of the 2.6 million uninsured New Yorkers as possible, and eliminate the number of children and youth who are without coverage.
However, the truth is that most New Yorkers don’t understand what health reform entails and many may not have even heard of the Health Benefit Exchange. This is more so for immigrant communities and those with English as a second language. New York prides itself on its diversity, but with rates of uninsurance among racial and ethnic minorities nearly double that of white New Yorkers, getting the word out on the Health Benefit Exchange will need to entail getting the word out in over 175 languages and dialects. 
However, have no fear! Health Care for All New York’s (HCFANY) Children Youth and Families Task Force is on the case with the support of New America Media (NAM).
On Friday, April 26th, HCFANY and NAM co-hosted an informational press briefing geared towards ethnic media to build understanding around the different provisions of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), the New York State Health Benefit Exchange, and what’s at stake for New York’s children and youth. Media outlets representing the Chinese, Indian, Turkish, Haitian, Filipino, Russian, and Latino communities attended the event and engaged in a dialogue about what their communities need from the Health Benefit Exchange and fellow advocates in order to guarantee that their populations are ready to enroll come October 1st. Presentations conducted by staff from the New York State Health Benefit Exchange, Community Service Society, Children’s Defense Fund NY, Make the Road NY, and the Coalition for Asian-American Children and Families detailed New York’s progress and plans for ACA implementation, as well as what advocates and stakeholders on the front lines know to be important elements of implementation for children and families in ethnic communities.
Filed under: ACA, Immigrants, Insurance Exchange, Uninsured | Tagged: HCFANY Events, Implementation, Insurance Exchange, Kids | Comments Off
Posted on April 9, 2013 by Arianne Slagle
From left: Carrie Tracy, Community Service Society, Jaime Torres, Regional Director of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, and Lois Uttley, or Raising Women’s Voices.
There are 269,000 uninsured people in the Bronx, and most have no idea there are affordable health insurance options coming in October through the NYS Health Benefit Exchange. To help get the word out, HCFANY steering committee members gave two informational workshop sessions this past Saturday at the Bronx Health Summit, held on the Fordham University campus.
One session, conducted in English, was given by HCFANY steering committee members Lois Uttley, Carrie Tracy of the Community Service Society, and Erin Hoben of the Children’s Defense Fund-NY. They were joined by U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Regional Director Jaime Torres. A second session, conducted in Spanish, was given by Rebecca Telzak of Make the Road NY and Flor Ramirez of the Children’s Aid Society.
Wish you could have attended these presentations? Click here to see the PowerPoint in English. Click here to view the PowerPoint in Spanish.
Would you like HCFANY representatives to give a talk at your organization or in your community about the new health insurance options coming this fall? Presentation requests can be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Filed under: ACA, Insurance Exchange, New York Health Benefit Exchange, Uninsured | Tagged: Federal health reform, HCFANY Events, Insurance Exchange | Comments Off
Posted on April 1, 2013 by Arianne Slagle
Panel (from left): Joanne Bailey, NYC Office of Citywide Health Insurance Access (OCHIA), Sara Rothstein, NYS Health Benefit Exchange, Martine Apodaca, Enroll America, Lois Uttley, Raising Women’s Voices, Dr. Jaime Torres, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
Thanks to everyone who came to last week’s HCFANY briefing in NYC – was a great success and we ended up with a turnout of over 130 people.
Many attendees have been asking for copies of the presentations and materials we had available at the meeting, so we are posting them up here for anyone who is interested. Here is a quick recap:
- Sara Rothstein, Assistant Director for Policy and Planning for the New York Health Benefit Exchange presented an update on implementation of the NYS Health Benefit Exchange including a very broad overview of the State’s outreach and marketing plan, information on the Navigator RFA. You can view Sara’s presentation by clicking here.
Martine Apodaca, Director of the Public Education Campaign for Enroll America presented a profile of the uninsured in New York and their findings on messaging around the new health insurance options based on a national survey. You can view Martine’s presentation by clicking here.
Joanne Bailey, Director of Policy and Research at the New York City Office of Citywide Health Insurance Access (OCHIA) presented on the timeline for health reform implementation in the New York, including a profile of the uninsured in New York City, and the potential challenges and opportunities brought by the ACA. You can view Joanne’s presentation by clicking here.
In addition, we had several publications and handouts available:
Filed under: Consumer Assistance, Insurance Exchange, New York Health Benefit Exchange, Small Business, Uninsured | Tagged: disabilities, Federal health reform, HCFANY Events, Insurance Exchange, small business, uninsured | Comments Off
Posted on March 22, 2013 by Arianne Slagle
Tomorrow marks the 3-year anniversary of the ACA and – wow – what a journey it has been!
Despite its youth, the ACA has already succeeded in helping millions of Americans get access to affordable care. For example, children with pre-existing health problems can no longer be turned down for coverage. Small businesses have access to tax credits to help pay for health insurance for their employees: 4 in 5 New York small businesses are eligible. Preventive care is now available without co-pays, seniors who hit the Medicare “donut hole” are paying less for prescription drugs, and health insurers now have strict guidelines on how much of your monthly premium must be used on medical care rather than their own administrative costs.
A few numbers give a picture of just how much the ACA has helped people in our state:
- New Yorkers with Medicare have saved over $407.6 million on prescription drugs since the law’s enactment. In 2012 alone, 226,569 individuals in New York saved over $170.4 million, or an average of $752 per beneficiary.
- 4.4 million New Yorkers gained access to free preventive health services in 2011 and 2012. 1.5 million seniors with Medicare received free preventive health care in 2012 alone.
- This year, 1 million New Yorkers with private insurance coverage will get $86,526,642 in rebates from insurance companies who have overcharged them, with an average rebate of $138 per family.
And the best is yet to come: In 2014, annual limits on insurance coverage will be banned, adults with pre-existing conditions will no longer be denied coverage, and tax credits will be available to help individuals and families pay for health insurance. And, individuals and small businesses will be able to get health insurance, including public programs like Medicaid, through the New York Health Benefit Exchange. This will save New Yorkers who buy insurance on their own an average of over 60% and people who get it through their small business over 20%. Enrollment will begin October of this year!
Because of the ACA, affordable, quality health care will soon be woven into the fabric of American society, making us stronger and healthier as a nation. And that’s something we can ALL look forward to!
So, Happy Third Birthday, ACA! May you live a long, happy (and healthy) life!
Filed under: ACA, Comprehensive Coverage, Federal health reform, Insurance Exchange, New York Health Benefit Exchange, Small Business, Uninsured | Tagged: ACA, Federal health reform, Insurance Exchange, small business | Comments Off
Posted on February 25, 2013 by Arianne Slagle
Thanks to the Affordable Care Act (ACA), more than 1 million uninsured New Yorkers will newly have access to affordable health insurance options starting this fall. That’s a lot of folks who will need to wade through a lot of new information in the coming months.
HCFANY will be holding a briefing in New York City on Thursday, March 7th at the Interchurch Center from 9:00 am – 11:30 am to go over the necessary public outreach and enrollment efforts that will need to happen in order to ensure that the greatest number of New Yorkers benefit from the ACA. Specifically, we will be going over the following questions:
- How will New Yorkers learn about new health coverage options?
- How is New York State going to reach out to and sign up the uninsured?
- What will individuals, families, and small employers in New York l need to know?
- What’s to be gained if we do it all right (…and at risk if we don’t)?
- What can our elected officials do to help make it go smoothly?
- How can groups across New York contribute and participate?
This meeting is open to all New York members, allies, colleagues and new friends in the NYC area.
Filed under: ACA, Comprehensive Coverage, Employer Sponsored Health Insurance, Insurance reform, Medicaid, New York Health Benefit Exchange, New York Health Reform, Underinsured, Uninsured, young adult | Tagged: ACA, Federal health reform, HCFANY meetings | Comments Off
Posted on January 29, 2013 by Arianne Slagle
Implementation of New York’s health benefit Exchange is now well underway, and policymakers are estimating that over one million New Yorkers will enroll in some form of health insurance through the Exchange. Yet, the vast majority of New Yorkers still don’t understand what the Exchange is or what it will do. Many others have not even heard about it yet.
With the Exchange set to start accepting enrollment applications in October of this year, it is quickly becoming clear that the State is in dire need of a public engagement campaign.
What it boils down to is that there are currently around 2.8 million New Yorkers who are uninsured. The Exchange is, above all, being created so that these folks will be able to find and enroll into quality, affordable health coverage. But, how can the State policymakers who are designing and implementing the Exchange know that they are building a system that will work for New York’s uninsured, without actually asking them about it?
At the same time, in order the reach its goal of getting one milion New Yorkers enrolled through the Exchange, the State will have to find a way to get these one million New Yorkers informed about the Exchange, motivated to pursue coverage through it, and able to use the system.
That’s a lot to accomplish in just 8 months!
HCFANY has put together a short policy brief on this issue, with recommendations for State policymakers on how to get the public engaged and informed about the NYS Exchange.
Filed under: ACA, Comprehensive Coverage, Federal health reform, Insurance Exchange, Insurance reform, New York Health Benefit Exchange, Public Health, Uninsured | Tagged: enrollment, Federal health reform, Implementation, Insurance Exchange | Comments Off
Posted on January 18, 2013 by Arianne Slagle
Kudos to everyone able to make the trek up to Albany yesterday during the depths of a particularly nasty flu season - we actually had a great turnout!
Fellow HCFANY-ers and guests got a chance to go over and discuss our advocacy agenda for this yeat, which centers around implementation of consumer-friendly Exchange and strategies to fill in the gaps in affordable coverage. In particular, we aim to focus on the following 5 things:
- A robust public engagement campaign
- The creation of a basic health plan
- Merging the individual and small group markets
- Extending Child Health Plus to adults, and
- Promoting health equity,
You can read more about HCFANY’s advocacy agenda by clicking here.
Danielle Holahan, Deputy Director of the NYS Exchange, also gave a brief update on what’s happening with the Exchange. You can see her presentation by clicking here.
Stay tuned in the coming days for more specific details on our advocacy agenda items!
Filed under: ACA, Federal health reform, Insurance Exchange, Underinsured, Uninsured | Tagged: ACA, HCFANY annual meetiing, Implementation, Insurance Exchange | Comments Off
Posted on January 9, 2013 by Arianne Slagle
A new study published in Health Affairs last week finds that young adults aged 19-25 have experienced significant gains in health insurance access since the passage of the ACA. The law, which allows young adults to stay on their parents’ insurance plans until the age of 26, is estimated to have increased health insurance coverage to over 3 million young adults in its first year alone.
So, this is not entirely news to us, as we have known for some time that young adults have been coming out in droves to sign up for their parents’ health insurance. But, the Health Affairs study dug a little deeper by using data from two nationally representative surveys to compare health insurance status and health care access for young adults 19-25 with those aged 26-34 between 2005 and 2011 (remember, this provision of the ACA went into effect in 2010). Researchers found that overall, the largest gains in insurance were made by unmarried adults, men, and nonstudents. It also found that the number of young adults who delayed getting health care and those who did not receive care because they couldn’t afford it has gone down significantly since the passage of the new law.
Young adults in the 19-25 age group have historically had the lowest rate of insurance coverage out of all of the age groups. However, the passage of the ACA seems to have stymied this trend by bumping up the rate of insurance coverage and access for this group so that it now more closely resembles that of other adults in older age categories.
So, in a nutshell - the ACA is working!
The article is titled “The Affordable Care Act Has Led to Significant Gains in Health Insurance And Access To Care For Young Adults” and can be found on the Health Affairs website by clicking here.
Filed under: ACA, Federal health reform, Insurance reform, Public Health, Uninsured, young adult | Tagged: ACA, Implementation, young adults | Comments Off
Posted on January 4, 2013 by Arianne Slagle
Yes, it’s a a new year and that means its time for the HCFANY annual meeting! Join us on January 17, 2013 in Albany to celebrate our success over the past year and strategize how, together, we can work with New York State to develop a Health Insurance Exchange that will achieve our long-term goal of quality, affordable health care for all New Yorkers.
The meeting will take place in the “Well” of the Legislative Office Building (LOB) in Albany from 11 am – 3:30 pm (coffee and registration at 10:30 am). Our tentative agenda for the day includes:
- Advocacy goals for 2013 - What we need to accomplish next for New York
- Update on ACA implementation in New York (Exchange staff has been invited)
- Our annual “Advocate of the Year” Award
- How to talk about ACA implementation to policymakers, the media, and the public
- Upcoming workgroup sessions: Help us plan our 2013 activities
Filed under: ACA, Federal health reform, Governor Cuomo, Insurance reform, New York Health Benefit Exchange, New York Health Reform, New York State Budget, New York State Politics, Small Business, State budget, State Department of Health, Underinsured, Uninsured, Women, young adult | Tagged: ACA, Annual Meeting, cool stuff, Federal health reform, Implementation, Obamacare, small business | Comments Off