Obamacare — October 29, 2013 at 8:00 pm

Get Covered America campaign reaches out to Michigan’s Hispanic community


Hispanic leaders joined the campaign to raise awareness about new healthcare options under the Affordable Care Act.

Inscríbase América y líderes Hispanos de Michigan unan sus fuerzas para elevar el nivel de conciencia sobre las nuevas opciones de atención médica. Pueden leer una historia sobre esto en Español aquí.

With nearly 63,000 eligible Hispanics currently living without insurance in Michigan, it’s a group the “Get Covered America” campaign wants to reach. That’s why they’ve joined forces with Michigan Hispanic leaders to help spread the word.

During a recent conference call, Erin Knott, Michigan state director of Enroll America, which spearheads Get Covered America, said many people are still unaware of the coverage options available to them.

State Representative Henry Yanez (D-Sterling Heights), who was also on the call, recalled his days as a firefighter and paramedic. He saw far too many people who needed emergency room care but were afraid to go because they didn’t have insurance to pay for it.

We need to dispel misconceptions and let people know affordable healthcare is available. We want to reach out to every community — and we have a large Hispanic community in Michigan, where I’m proud we voted to expand Medicaid.

Maria Flores is one of the currently uninsured young adults in Michigan who can finally obtain coverage.

I’m a fairly recent college graduate working at a law firm that doesn’t provide insurance. I have a pre-existing condition, so insurers weren’t willing to offer me coverage. Because I couldn’t buy insurance, that led to high medical bills. All that will be changing with the Affordable Care Act. There will be no denial for my pre-existing condition and it will be more affordable for me and my husband. I won’t have to delay treatment or be burdened with high costs.

What’s more, Flores said she’s seeing enthusiasm among young people and Hispanics about the Affordable Care Act. “I want to encourage people to check out the insurance marketplace so they don’t have unforeseen expenses,” she said.

Although there’s still work to be done to make the website work at its best, people can enroll at HealthCare.gov. There’s also a Spanish-language site in the works. Enrollment assistance is available by phone, too, in 150 languages including Spanish, at 1-800-318-2596.

What’s more, there are navigators and certified application counselors across Michigan who can help you complete the enrollment process in person. Visit EnrollMichigan.com and click on the “For Individuals & Families” tab to find one near you. If you need help in Spanish, call ahead to make sure a Spanish-speaking navigator or counselor is available.

Get Covered America is also out in communities across Michigan every day, educating people about their healthcare options. Want to help spread the word? Learn more about volunteering for Get Covered America HERE.

[CC image credit: Will O’Neill | Flickr.]