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Post-COVID, New York sends health insurance notice


Tue, May 16th 2023 12:20 pm

Hochul reminds New Yorkers to take action to stay covered through New York State Marketplace

√ Eligibility redetermination notices are being distributed to over 9 million enrolled in Medicaid, Child Health Plus, Essential Plan as federal law now requires eligibility reviews for public programs to resume

√ Enrollees in New York's public health insurance programs will need to renew their insurance by the deadline to avoid a gap in health insurance coverage

√ NY State of Health marketplace prepares to assist consumers, maintain open enrollment during transition out of public health emergency

Gov. Kathy Hochul announced health insurance renewals have begun for more than 9 million New Yorkers enrolled in public health insurance programs, “and New York stands ready to help consumers stay covered.”

A press release stated, “The federal Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2023 ended the requirement to keep individuals continuously enrolled in Medicaid, Child Health Plus, and the Essential Plan. Federal law now requires eligibility reviews for public programs to resume. Current state enrollees will receive renewal notices in advance of their coverage end dates with detailed instructions of how to stay covered and their deadline to take action.”

Hochul said, "New Yorkers deserve access to quality and affordable health care, which is why my administration has prioritized delivering health insurance to a record number of New Yorkers. Through our nation-leading health care system, we continue to ensure everyone in our state has access to the best care available, and I urge New Yorkers to renew their coverage in New York's public health insurance programs."

The press release stated, “In coordination with the Department of Health, participating health insurance plans, health care providers, and thousands of certified enrollment staff across the state stand prepared to assist consumers through the renewal process and keep New Yorkers covered. The Department of Health has reviewed federal government guidance; developed plans to enhance systems; increased resources and added staff; and collaborated with state and federal government officials, local departments of social services, partners, advocates and other stakeholders to help New Yorkers navigate the changes to their insurance programs.”

Acting State Health Commissioner Dr. James McDonald said, "COVID-19 took a tremendous emotional, physical and financial toll on New Yorkers, so it's critical that they have all the resources they need post-pandemic. The department remains committed to ensuring that New Yorkers stay covered and have access to quality and affordable health coverage."

New York State Medicaid Director Amir Bassiri said, "Over the past three years, the Department of Health has collaborated with other agencies, stakeholders and communities to help the state through the setbacks caused by the pandemic. As the transition to post-pandemic New York, our efforts to preserve health insurance coverage, protections and services for the most vulnerable New Yorkers who depend on them continue."

New York State of Health Executive Director Danielle Holahan said, "During the pandemic, New York State of Health provided millions of New Yorkers with free or low-cost health insurance in the face of the unprecedented economic and public health uncertainties. We will not rest until we've ensured all of our members have had every opportunity to stay covered."

The press release stated, “Throughout the next year, current enrollees will receive renewal notices based on the end date of their coverage. Enrollees with coverage end dates of June 30 have already begun receiving their renewal notices. New York State of Health enrollees should follow the instructions on their renewal notices and take any needed actions once the renewal window opens to avoid a gap in health insurance coverage. Members who enrolled through their county's Local Department of Social Services or the New York City Human Resources Administration (HRA) will receive a renewal packet in the mail and should follow the instructions and deadlines outlined in that packet to renew their coverage.

“New Yorkers whose incomes and other family circumstances have changed since the pandemic began and are no longer eligible for fully subsidized public coverage, continue to have a broad range of free or low-cost health insurance options available. New York's Essential Plan for low-income individuals will smooth the transition for New Yorkers who no longer qualify for Medicaid and enhanced federal tax credits will make coverage more affordable for individuals transitioning to a Qualified Health Plan.

“Enrollment in NY State of Health will remain open through May 2024 so anyone who loses their Medicaid, Child Health Plus, or Essential Plan coverage during the redetermination process will be able to enroll in a Qualified Health Plan, if they qualify.

“New York has made major strides in recent years, combined with federal efforts, to improve the affordability and accessibility of health insurance, bringing uninsured rates to historically low levels:

√ “In the state fiscal year 2021 budget, New York eliminated premiums in the Essential Plan for adults not eligible for Medicaid with incomes up to 200% of FPL;

√ “In 2021, New York expedited the availability of enhanced Premium Tax Credits for Qualified Health Plan coverage for New Yorkers with incomes above 200% of FPL;

√ “In the state FY 2023 budget, New York extended 12 months postpartum coverage to pregnant individuals in Medicaid, eliminated premiums for children with incomes at or below 222% of FPL in the Child Health Plus programs, and aligned Medicaid eligibility levels for all adults at 138% of FPL;

√ “In the state FY 2024 budget, the state reiterated its intention to seek a federal waiver to extend the Essential Plan to more low- and moderate-income New Yorkers with incomes up to 250% of FPL, which will smooth the transition for consumers moving from Medicaid.”

For more on New York State Marketplace eligibility and renewals, New Yorkers can reach out to their local Department of Social Services office, or learn more on the NY State of Health website and the Department of Health's Medicaid website. Hochul's FY 2024 enacted budget provides an additional $22 billion multi-year investment to support the state's health care system, including an additional $1 billion in health care capital funding for providers and expanded Medicaid benefits for more than 7.8 million low-income New Yorkers.

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