FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, June 30, 2015
WASHINGTON, DC – This month’s “#GetCovered Champion” is the NC Farmworkers Project in Eastern North Carolina, a local nonprofit organization dedicated to helping farmworkers improve their living conditions and provide access to healthcare. The group is teaming up with Enroll America to connect its community with health coverage through the Affordable Care Act. At a recent enrollment event in Sampson County, NC, over 50 farmworkers successfully enrolled in one day thanks to the hard work of the NC Farmworkers Project, enrollment assisters, and other local organizations.
Even though the open enrollment period for the Health Insurance Marketplace ended earlier this year, consumers who experience certain life events might be eligible for a special enrollment period to enroll in health coverage throughout the year. Because entering the country on a H-2A work visa is considered a qualifying life event, many of the farmworkers that relocate to North Carolina to work during the year are eligible for a 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. With the help of Enroll America and other local organizations, they hosted their first enrollment event earlier this year in Newton Grove, NC at the Episcopal Farmworker Ministry, a community church where farmworkers regularly attend Sunday services. The church provided free transportation to the event, where a dozen bi-lingual in-person assisters from seven organizations came to help enroll farmworkers. There were nurses on-site from CommWell Health, a local health center, who offered blood pressure screenings, blood sugar checks, and HIV tests. A local vendor sold tacos, and soccer games started up throughout the day while attendees waited for their appointments.
A total of 62 farmworkers attended the event from four surrounding counties, and 54 of them successfully enrolled in coverage – a very high rate of enrollment success at a single event. The NC Farmworkers Project also sent enrollees home with a booklet designed to make sure they understand how to use and retain their coverage. Each booklet includes specific information about their insurance plan, how to send payments, reminders to cancel their plans before returning to their country of origin, local clinic services, and important tax information.
The NC Farmworkers Project and Enroll America will continue to reach out to the farmworker community and host events throughout the summer with the help of CommWell Health, Piedmont Health Services, Stedman Wade Health Services, Legal Aid of North Carolina, Wake Health Services, Access East, and Goshen Medical Center.
Each month this summer, Enroll America will be highlighting a “#GetCovered Champion” who is using innovative outreach techniques to reach the uninsured in their community, and help them understand the insurance options and financial help available to them through the Affordable Care Act.
To find a free, in-person enrollment assister near you and schedule an appointment to see if you quality for a special enrollment period, visit the Get Covered Connector at www.getcoveredamerica.org/connector.
About Enroll America and Get Covered America
Enroll America is the nation’s leading health care enrollment coalition. An independent nonprofit, nonpartisan organization, Enroll America works with more than 4,600 partners in all 50 states to create cutting-edge tools, analyze data, inform policy, and share best practices in service of its mission: maximizing the number of Americans who enroll in and retain health coverage under the Affordable Care Act.
The Get Covered America campaign was created in 2013 to inform millions of eligible consumers about their new health insurance options, and has been tested, refined, and proven successful through two enrollment cycles. Get Covered America programs and tools are now being utilized by partners in enrollment efforts nationwide, supported by more than 100 Enroll America staff working both nationally and on-the-ground in targeted communities across the country.