Bubbling Up

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With the third Health Insurance Marketplace enrollment period approaching this fall, Missouri Foundation for Health and its Cover Missouri Coalition are beginning a new push to educate those who remain uninsured. As part of its Expanding Coverage initiative, the Foundation created the Grassroots Outreach to Maximize Enrollment (GOME) program. The goal of GOME is to increase insurance enrollment by raising awareness and understanding of the Missouri Health Insurance Marketplace. GOME is geared toward groups that have not yet been reached through previous outreach efforts. A total of 15 organizations were chosen to be GOME partners, with the program set to last six months, from September 1 through February 29, 2016.

GOME participants represent a large cross-section of the Foundation’s service region, both geographically and demographically. Organizations were chosen based on their deep community connections and their ability to influence subgroups whose uninsured rates remain high.

GOME awardees include the Citizens Memorial Hospital District, located in rural southwest Missouri. This group will target members of the agricultural community, small businesses, mobile dental clinic participants, uninsured patients and others in the region. Certified Application Counselors will utilize literature, public events, direct mail, advertising and one-on-one assistance in order to attract target populations.

In St. Louis, Latinos En Axión STL will work to inform Hispanic and Latino populations, some of whom face an additional language barrier when seeking health insurance. Latinos En Axión will focus its efforts along the Cherokee Street shopping district and will connect with Spanish-language churches in the area.

The Foundation seeks to reach groups such as immigrants, LGBTQ communities, college students, recently released prisoners and many others. Additional partners include Hannibal Regional Hospital, Nurses for Newborns and Hand in Hand Ministries (see below for a full list).

“We’re looking forward to our GOME partners joining the cause,” said Program Director Nancy Kelley.

“These groups are trusted allies in their communities and they have the ability to break down barriers that have kept some uninsured people from getting covered in the past.”

Nancy Kelley

As of February of this year, 253,430 Missourians signed up for coverage through the Missouri Health Insurance Marketplace, with the state ranking 9th for the total number of enrollees. That number broke the inaugural year’s record by more than 100,000 people. This success is due, in large part, to the ongoing efforts of the Foundation’s Cover Missouri Coalition and its work to educate and enroll consumers in Marketplace plans. As part of GOME, the 15 organizations will also become members of this growing Coalition to ensure that Missouri’s uninsured rate continues to fall. Cover Missouri aims to reduce the state’s uninsured rate to below five percent in the first five years of Affordable Care Act implementation.

Grassroots Outreach to Maximize Enrollment (GOME) Partners:

  • Area Resources for Community & Human Services (ARCHS)
  • Bi-Lingual International Assistant Services
  • Citizens Memorial Hospital District
  • Community Health-In-Partnership Services (CHIPS)
  • Communities of Recovery, Inc. (CORE)
  • Gibson Recovery Center, Inc.
  • GRO – Grass Roots Organizing
  • Hand in Hand Multicultural Center
  • Hannibal Regional Hospital
  • Latinos En Axión STL
  • Nurses for Newborns Foundation
  • Phoenix Programs, Inc.
  • Planned Parenthood of Kansas and Mid-Missouri
  • Walsworth Community Center
  • Wright Care Dentistry

ABOUT COVER MISSOURI COALITION

Cover Missouri is a project of the Missouri Foundation for Health to promote quality, affordable health coverage for every Missourian. The Cover Missouri Coalition aims to reduce the rate of uninsured Missourians to less than five percent in five years. Members work to build awareness, facilitate enrollment, increase health insurance literacy and support Medicaid transformation. Coalition members also share learning and best practices, maximize resources, identify challenges and opportunities and build an inclusive plan to insure Missourians. For more information on the Marketplace, please visit covermissouri.org.