On Track and Moving Forward
Lessons Learned from the Implementation of Consumer Assistance for the New Hampshire Insurance Marketplace: October 1-‐December 31, 2013
The January 2014 report prepared by CHI (Community Health Institute), under contract with the HNH Foundation, provides a comprehensive overview of the progress being made in health insurance outreach and enrollment efforts in New Hampshire. It also suggests action steps for February and March. Download the full report.
Project Purpose: Provide a report of New Hampshire’s (NH) progress in implementing thehealth insurance marketplace between October 1 and December 31, 2013. This report provides a complete picture of what is happening in the state, across organizations. Key findings may be used to tweak plans and practices to increase the efficiency of future enrollment periods.
Key Findings from October-December 2013
1. Outreach and enrollment efforts were complicated by three external factors: technical difficulties associated with HealthCare.gov and the rollout of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), the decision not to expand Medicaid eligibility, and the concurrent transition to Medicaid managed care in NH. As a result of the complications with HealthCare.gov, partners focused on building outreach and enrollment infrastructure until December, when enrollments began to rapidly increase.
2. With 11,446 enrollments, NH was one of ten states that met the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) projected number of enrollments during the first three months. This amounts to 60% of the 19,000 enrollments projected between October 1, 2013 and March 31, 2014. NH compared favorably with national statistics on total enrollment, but a smaller percentage of NH enrollees were young (22% vs. 24%) and NH experienced a slower rate of new Medicaid enrollments due to the lack of Medicaid expansion.
3. Slightly less than three-quarters (72%) of new enrollees in NH received federal financial assistance, compared to 79% at the national level, suggesting a need for outreach to lower-income NH residents. With one insurance issuer, the average monthly premium for the lowest cost Silver plan in NH is $359 compared to $310 at the national level.
4. An early effort by NH Health Plan to place assisters in all areas of the state was apparently successful. Partners report that all regions of the state are adequately reached by outreach efforts, a fact which has also been made possible by collaborations between partners.
Action Items for February-March 2014
1. Prepare appropriate communication strategy to respond to questions from consumers (regarding coverage details, narrow network, and information security) and businesses (regarding the viability of SHOP plans)
2. Seek out existing collaborations between partner organizations to streamline outreach and enrollment efforts
3. Ensure media firm provides timely materials to partners
4. Expand access to assistance resources by seeking out partners with financial interests in increased coverage
5. Streamline news updates and reporting in one organization, who can then respond to publicity requests from a number of sources (e.g. government, media)
Despite a slow start and early disappointments, partners feel that efforts to implement the insurance marketplace are on track, and are optimistic about the next three months
HNH Foundation President Sandi Van Scoyoc Announces Retirement Plans
A change in leadership is coming to the HNH Foundation in Concord this spring. Sandi Van Scoyoc has announced her retirement after serving as the Foundation’s first and only President for almost 15 years. The HNH Foundation was formed as the result of the merger between Blue Cross/Blue Shield of NH and Matthew Thornton Health Plan. Incorporated in October 1997, the Foundation seeks to improve the health and wellness of New Hampshire’s population, especially vulnerable children, through grants made to community organizations throughout the state.
Under Ms. Van Scoyoc’s leadership, the Foundation has become New Hampshire’s leading funder dedicated to increasing health and dental insurance coverage for children, promoting children’s oral health and preventing childhood obesity, with over $600,000 in grants awarded annually.
This scope of work has remained consistent over the years. According to Ms. Van Scoyoc, “I don’t see our work on insurance coverage, obesity or oral health changing any time soon. Our strategies within these goals may change as we learn of best and most promising practices, but we will continue to focus on these three priorities. There are still children without health and dental insurance coverage, without access to healthy foods and active lifestyles, and without access to preventive oral health services. We have more work to do.”
Prior to joining the HNH Foundation in 1999, Ms. Van Scoyoc served in the Office of Planning and Research at the NH Department of Health and Human Service as a Planning and Research Analyst (1995-1998), and as Program Chief at the Bureau of Maternal and Child Health (1983-1995).
HNH Foundation Board Chair Martha McLeod called Ms. Van Scoyoc “a gifted leader and a true champion of those who are underserved and often invisible, especially our young children. We truly appreciate Sandi’s commitment to the organization and the State of New Hampshire and wish her and her family well in her retirement.”
The HNH Foundation’s Board of Directors has named a Search Committee, made up of Board members Tyler Brannen, Shannon Mills, Martha McLeod, Steve Paris and Elaine Van Dyke.
The appointment of a new CEO is expected this spring.
For more information about the search process, please contact: Amy L. Lockwood, Full Circle Consulting, at 603-463-1081 or www.fullcirclenh.com
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