Monday, October 5, 2009

Fed $$$ to enroll DC kids in Medicaid

The federal Department of Health and Human Services has announced the award of $984,144 to the National Alliance for Hispanic Health to find and enroll DC children and youth who are uninsured but eligible for either Medicaid or CHIP.   The feds awarded $40 million to the states and DC as part of a national effort to improve health outcomes for young Americans.

This funding follows a few years' breather of non-local funding to increase Medicaid and CHIP enrollment.   The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation's Covering Kids (CK) and Covering Kids & Families (CKF) were national programs to help states increase the number of eligible children and later families in public health insurance programs following the creation of the State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP).   The core components of Covering Kids and CKF were outreach, simplification and coordination.   DC Action for Children was the DC grantee.

CK and CKF had many successes including working with IMA to shorten the Medicaid application, train front-line workers of all kinds to help residents fill out their application, integrate health insurance questions into the intake process of nonprofits across the city, raise awareness of the importance of health insurance, and most important of all, enroll thousands of children and their family members in a health insurance program.

If this new project is only half as successful as CK/CKF, children will truly be the winners.