How the NC Farmworkers Project Helped 54 People Get Covered At a Single Enrollment Event

By William Tomasko

Throughout this summer, we’ll be highlighting “#GetCovered Champions” such as the NC Farmworkers Project who are using innovative outreach techniques to reach and inform the uninsured in their community. Check out last month’s post on Columbus Public Health.

Identifying someone who qualifies for a Special Enrollment Period can sometimes feel like looking for a needle in a haystack.

But the NC Farmworkers Project was able to host a recent enrollment event where 54 out of 62 attendees successfully enrolled in coverage — even outside of open enrollment.

How? By connecting a specific population they serve — farmworkers on H-2A work visas — to a particularly relevant Special Enrollment Period.

The NC Farmworkers Project is a local nonprofit organization dedicated to helping farmworkers improve their living conditions and increasing access to health care. And entering the country on a H-2A work visa is a “qualifying life event,” which means the NC Farmworkers Project can help people in this situation enroll in coverage through the health insurance marketplaces outside of open enrollment.

At a recent event in Sampson County, North Carolina,the NC Farmworkers Project partnered with local assisters to help 54 out of 62 attendees — a very high rate of success for a single event — get covered through that Special Enrollment Period.

“The NC Farmworkers Project proves that local organizations are a critical force in expanding access to health coverage in the communities that need it most, even if enrollment isn’t the sole focus of their group,” said Anne Filipic, president of Enroll America. “The NC Farmworkers Project is a trusted voice to the underserved farmworker community, and by joining forces with enrollment leaders, they are working hard to make sure these folks understand how they can benefit from the Affordable Care Act.”

Enroll America has an ongoing partnership with the NC Farmworkers Project to make sure farmworkers coming to North Carolina during the year have health coverage. Enrollment events tailored to farmworkers will continue during the summer, with help from additional local partners: CommWell Health, Piedmont Health Services, Stedman Wade Health Services, Legal Aid of North Carolina, Wake Health Services, Access East, and Goshen Medical Center.

North Carolina’s example just goes to show that with specialized outreach strategies and community partnerships, the enrollment community can make sure more people with qualifying life events are able to sign up for marketplace coverage!

Interested in connecting more Americans to the kind of in-person assistance that made it possible for those farmworkers to get covered? Check out (and share!) the Get Covered Connector — consumers can use it to find local help year-round, and even schedule appointments with Connector partners.

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