Supreme Court Decision Could Take Away Financial Help for Over 230,000 Ohioans Enrolled in Markplace in King V. Burwell Decision

In November of 2014, the U.S. Supreme Court agreed to hear the case of King v. Burwell.  The case challenges the subsidies paid to those enrolled in Qualified Health Plans in states with a Federally-Facilitated Marketplace (FFM), such as Ohio. Subsidies help make health insurance affordable for those with low and moderate incomes.

The Court did not have to review this case. The case does not present a constitutional issue, and there was no disagreement among the federal Courts of Appeals that first heard the case. Why did four justices (the minimum number needed to accept a case) decide to take this case? Many think the Supreme Court wants to reverse the Court of Appeals ruling that protected the subsidies in the majority of the states.

If so, will they find their 5th vote to throw the subsidies of over 230,000 Ohioans into doubt?  Not if UHCAN Ohio and thousands of consumer activists across the country can persuade them otherwise, through the powerful stories of people currently getting subsidies in Ohio and the 26 other affected states.  If you are a person who is getting a subsidy in the Marketplace or know someone who is, we want to hear from you. Email us at kgmeiner@uhcanohio.org

 The Supreme Court will hear oral arguments on March 4, 2015, and a decision is anticipated by the end of June 2015.

Thanks for a Successful Dental Access Now! Advocacy Day!

Click here to view more pictures on Facebook!

Thanks to everyone who joined us for our Advocacy Day! Now is the time to bring Dental Therapists to Ohio! #FillTheGap

Yesterday, dozens of advocates from across the state gathered in Columbus to meet with lawmakers and to call for more dental providers. Many of the advocates are from Ohio’s 84 Dental Health Professional Shortage areas, where there are simply not enough dentists to meet the needs in the community. 

“One measure of good oral health care is access to dental professionals. On this measure Ohio is failing,” said David Maywhoor, project director of Dental Access Now!. “We have communities that have no dentists. We have communities where there are no dentists who serve Medicaid patients and our safety net clinics have long waiting lists. The need for care is simply greater than Ohio’s current dental workforce.”

What You Need to Know About Medicaid Redetermination, How to Renew Medicaid, & What to Do If You Get a Termination Notice

Ohio Department of Medicaid (ODM) has taken action to terminate thousands of Medicaid recipients who have not responded to recent requests for information. Here’s what people need to know:

 ODM is required to verify continued eligibility for most people on Medicaid every 12 months.  This process is called “Medicaid Redetermination,” “Recertification,” or “Renewal”. Each month starting in January, ODM is sending enrollees a 14-page packet to complete. Many people did not receive their packets due to incorrect addresses.

 Recipients who receive a packet can renew their benefits by supplying the required information in one of the following ways:

  • online at benefits.ohio.gov (click on the “renew my benefits” tab)
  • by going to their county Job and Family Services office, or
  • mailing the packet back to your county Job and Family Services office, with $.70 postage (Note: some packets have the wrong address)

NEW REPORT: Community Health Workers: At the Heart of Transforming Ohio’s Health Care Delivery System

Today, UHCAN Ohio released its report on its survey findings, called Community Health Workers: At the Heart of Transforming Ohio’s Health Care Delivery System. During 2013-14, UHCAN Ohio conducted a statewide survey to explore how Community Health Workers (CHW) were being used throughout Ohio. 75 organizations responded to the survey.

The release of the report is timely, since this year’s state budget includes language requiring Medicaid managed care plans to use community health workers in at-risk neighborhoods to connect women with health care and community supports. This is part of the administration’s thrust to reduce infant mortality.

“The administration’s proposal is a clear indication that they understand there are benefits to using CHW’s in at risk communities. Our report paints a picture of the many ways community health workers are being used throughout the health care delivery system and we hope it will spark a statewide movement to expand their use beyond maternal and child health,” said Nita Carter, Health Equity Director of UHCAN Ohio.

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