Obamacare — July 16, 2013 at 7:48 am

Funding for Michigan health centers will help the uninsured find coverage


Obama administration awards $3.8 million to provide enrollment assistance in Michigan.

Here’s more proof that Obamacare is right on track — and doing exactly what it should.

Last week, Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Kathleen Sebelius announced $3,782,688 in grant awards to Michigan health centers. These funds will help the health centers enroll uninsured Michiganders in new health coverage options made available by Obamacare.

In Michigan, 32 health centers operating 195 sites served 570,009 patients last year. Of those patients, 32 percent were uninsured. With these funds, the centers are expected to hire 69 new employees to help 98,062 Michigan residents enroll in affordable health insurance coverage.

U.S. Congressman John Conyers, Jr., issued a statement announcing these grants that said, in part:

These health centers will serve as access points for our community’s citizens to gather information and assistance in accessing the health care benefits of the Affordable Care Act. […]

Each of these centers have a long history of providing assistance to patients in understanding eligibility and with delivering high-quality, primary health care services in our community. These funds will dramatically assist health centers in helping consumers understand their coverage options in the new Health Insurance Marketplace.

Michigan residents can find their local health center HERE. (For residents of other states, here’s a nationwide health center locator.)

These grants are part of the Obama administration’s goal to make it as easy as possible to apply for health coverage. Because Michigan Republicans voted down the creation of a state-based insurance marketplace a few months ago, Michigan will be part of the federal marketplace.

Michigan residents can already get detailed information at HealthCare.gov to prepare for open enrollment by reviewing and comparing plans so they can sign up for health insurance beginning October 1, 2013. Coverage will begin January 1, 2014.

Having staff on site at Michigan health centers will make the process even easier. Trained experts can provide personalized guidance through the enrollment process, which is especially important for people who will be getting health insurance for the first time.

In related news, HHS released a short video to remind Americans that Obamacare implementation is on schedule — with many key elements already in place.

[Photo credit: William Melton Jr. / SEIU]