The subject matter mentioned above is to bring awareness of what has happened. Based on new federal law, continuous Medicaid coverage ended on March 31, 2023. Although it has ended, it does not mean that those under the medicaid benefits have lost their own coverage. I hope that you may be kind enough to allow me a column in your widely circulated daily to express my view regarding this subject as well as to draw awareness on this matter.
Continuous Medicaid was a valuable tool that helped states ensure that children stay enrolled in the health coverage for which they are eligible and have consistent access to needed health care services. This coverage has ceased as of March 31st, 2023. There have been months of preparation and alerts as extensions were implemented. Medicaid is not only beneficial for us Mexican, Latino, and Hispanic people of Texas, but Medicaid is used by and relied on as well by Black, White, Brown, all races and backgrounds across Texas. Those with health issues, those with families, and especially by the pregnant people in Texas are at most risk to be impacted by this change.
As millions lose their medicaid coverage, we urge community members to get informed about the process to avoid losing coverage.
If you have Medicaid, verify that you can renew your benefits to ensure your coverage will continue if you are eligible. You could lose coverage if you don’t renew or don’t respond to the information requests by the U.S Department of Health and Human Services, even if you are eligible for Medicaid. We plead that you reply to the information requests by the HHSC and commit to doing your renewals that are sent to you by mail in a yellow envelope that says Action Required in red.
As an organization that works with immigrant families, we understand that some people may be fearful that public programs such as these have immigrant consequences for them or someone in their family. We assure you that there are no immigrant consequences to these public programs. Should you have questions about this, you may reach out to me at the La Unión Del Pueblo Entero Alton office, located at 416 S Alton Blvd, Suite A, Alton, TX 78573.
What about people who lose Medicaid and aren’t eligible for Medicare or an employer’s plan (ie, they need to purchase their own replacement coverage)? HealthCare.gov is offering an extended enrollment opportunity from March 31, 2023 to July 31, 2024, for anyone who loses Medicaid coverage. You may also visit www.yourtexasbenefits.com for more information on renewing and updating your benefits. While this is a temporary solution, we urge you to respond to your HHSC information requests and renewals.
Editor’s Note: The above guest column was penned by Elizabeth Rodriguez, community organizer and Medicaid ambassador for La Unión Del Pueblo Entero. The column appears in The Rio Grande Guardian International News Service with the permission of the author. Rodriguez can be reached by email via: [email protected].
Editor’s Note: The main image accompanying the above guest column shows a La Unión Del Pueblo Entero event outside their Alton, Texas, offices.
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