As many as 15 million people could lose Medicaid coverage when the continuous enrollment provision ends March 31, according to the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services. That’s why Health Net, an insurance provider in California, launched its “Review to Renew” campaign Wednesday to ensure Medi-Cal members are aware of this transition.
The continuous enrollment requirement was part of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, which was enacted in 2020 and bars states from disenrolling people from Medicaid during the public health emergency. In return, these states receive enhanced federal funding. The continuous enrollment provision resulted in Medicaid enrollment rising considerably compared to before the pandemic. But the Consolidated Appropriations Act, signed into law in December, will now end the continuous enrollment requirement March 31.
This means that Medi-Cal, California’s Medicaid program, will return to asking members to renew and review their eligibility information, a process called redetermination. Medi-Cal provides coverage for about 13 million people in the state.
Health Net is a subsidiary of Centene Corporation and provides health plans to individuals, families and businesses who qualify for Medi-Cal or Medicare. It serves about 3 million people. Its “Review to Renew” campaign will leverage print and digital media — such as mail, interactive voice response calls, text messages, social media, digital advertisements and posters — to make Medi-Cal members aware of the deadline and provide them with resources to retain coverage.
“Through our Review to Renew campaign, Health Net wants to ensure millions of Medi-Cal members are aware of the upcoming deadline and resources to maintain their health coverage, while encouraging all Medi-Cal members to review and update their household information,” said Dr. Ramiro Zúñiga, vice president and medical director of Health Net.
In addition, Health Net will provide educational materials at several cultural and community events to help Californians understand the process for renewal.
Doing this outreach and education work is necessary to make Americans aware of the end of the continuous enrollment requirement after so many years of not having to go through redetermination, Zúñiga added.
“Given that California has not gone through the redetermination process in almost three years, informing members of this change is crucial. If not informed, many members may end up without continuation of coverage,” Zúñiga said. “Maintaining health coverage helps Californians stay healthy and live their lives to the fullest.”
A recent Kaiser Family Foundation report showed what could happen to those who don’t renew their Medicaid coverage. Prior to the pandemic, 65% of people disenrolled from Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program experienced a period of being uninsured, according to the report. This includes 17% of people who were uninsured for the full year after disenrollment.
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