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Blue Cross Blue Shield offers aid to those who lose Medicaid

Along with every state and U.S. territory, Alabama has resumed checking eligibility for all Medicaid members for the first time since the COVID-19 pandemic began.

To address the concerns of Medicaid recipients, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Alabama said it is offering guidance, education, and health insurance options to Alabamians who are no longer eligible for Medicaid. The public health emergency ended May 11.

“Our mission is to provide Alabamians access to quality, affordable healthcare,” said Tim Vines, president and CEO, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Alabama. “We want to serve as a dependable resource for Alabamians so they will have the peace of mind knowing they can remain covered during this time.”

The Families First Coronavirus Response Act, which prevented states from removing Medicaid recipients during this public health emergency, will no longer apply. Many recipients will need to confirm eligibility or find another health insurance plan.

More than 120,000 Alabamians are at risk of losing Medicaid, Blue Cross said, and approximately 61,000 Alabamians unfortunately may not have access to any other type of coverage.

However, as many as 69,000 will be eligible for coverage either under an Affordable Care Act (ACA) health plan, employer coverage, or a Medicare plan if they have lost their Medicaid health insurance 60 days prior to losing coverage, or any time after coverage ends.

After applying, individuals will have 60 days to enroll in a plan. Many individuals losing their Medicaid coverage and looking for an ACA plan will be eligible for financial assistance, and some could be eligible for a $0 monthly premium health plan. For questions or to explore coverage options, please call 855-890-7416 to speak with a Blue Cross representative.

The National COVID-19 public health emergency began March 13, 2020. Medicaid recipients maintained coverage during the emergency and were only removed if they requested to be removed, were deceased, or moved out of state.

Alabama Medicaid is processing renewals during the recipient’s normal month. Some recipients will automatically renew (i.e., SSI recipients who are still receiving SSI checks), but others will receive renewal packets at their normal time to renew.

Medicaid recipients have several ways to update their addresses, phone numbers, and other information. Visit www.Medicaid.Alabama.gov for more information.

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