4 Michigan groups get $2.5M to sign up uninsured

Four Michigan organizations will get $2.5 million from the federal government to help people sign up for insurance under the new health care law.
AP Wire
Aug 19, 2013

Grants announced last week by the Obama administration will be used to hire and train outreach workers. Enrollment for the law's new coverage options starts Oct. 1, and benefits kick in Jan. 1.

The Navigator program is being closely watched in Michigan because the GOP-led Legislature rejected federal money to do state-directed consumer assistance despite requests from Republican Gov. Rick Snyder to accept the funding.

The group getting just more than half of the $2.5 million is Michigan Consumers for Healthcare, whose network is expected to reach low-income uninsured residents in every region across the state.

Others receiving money — about $600,000 more than expected earlier — are Community Bridges Management Inc., the Arab Community Center for Economic & Social Services, and American Indian Health and Family Services of Southeastern Michigan.

Just five states will spend less per capita than Michigan to get the word to uninsured residents about how to enroll for medical coverage under the Affordable Care Act, according to a recent Associated Press analysis.

Navigators will walk people through the process of buying private insurance from a new federally run marketplace, or exchange. They will help people estimate their family income for 2014, important in determining eligibility for federal tax credits to help pay the cost of coverage and eligibility for government-provided insurance such as Medicaid.

The U.S. government previously awarded $3.8 million to roughly 30 low-income community health clinics in Michigan to hire about 70 workers to help sign people up for insurance.

Their job won't be easy. They must find a hard-to-reach group of 1.2 million mostly working poor and young people without insurance, many with a high school education or less. Nearly eight in 10 of Americans eligible for insurance exchanges don't know about it, according to Enroll America, a nonprofit trying to spread the word about the health overhaul.

"The new marketplaces will provide unprecedented access to affordable and quality health insurance to individuals and families throughout Michigan and the nation," said U.S. Rep. Sander Levin, D-Mich. "The navigators announced today are going to play a vital role in ensuring that consumers have the information they need as they shop for and choose their health insurance plans."



Tri-cities realist

God forbid those that are looking for govt. assistance, actually have to expend some energy to go and look for these handouts, I mean benefits. Now we need to spend millions, so we can give away billions. Try that in the private sector and see how long you remain in business.

According to the article:
"They will help people estimate their family income for 2014, important in determining eligibility for federal tax credits to help pay the cost of coverage and eligibility for government-provided insurance such as Medicaid."

Hmm, perhaps looking at last years tax return, and then determining if their pay went up or down, might just accomplish the same task... all at zero cost to the taxpayer, what a friggin concept!

"The U.S. government previously awarded $3.8 million to roughly 30 low-income community health clinics in Michigan to hire about 70 workers to help sign people up for insurance." This equates to just over $54,285 per worker, not a bad gig if you can get it. Of course, we should pay these people well since "Their job won't be easy." And we wonder why we are trillions in debt, wake up people, Obamacare and other entitlements WILL bankrupt this nation.

In TOTALLY unrelated news, popular clothier Forever 21, will reduce certain employees' hours. According to the memo, Carla Macias, associate director of human resources at the company, wrote:
"Company-wide, Forever 21 recently audited its staffing levels, staffing needs and payroll in conduction with reviewing its overall spending budget. As a result, we are reducing a number of full-time non-management positions." (to a maximum of 29.5 hours per week.)

It is just a TOTAL coincidence that the ACA (Obamacare) requires employers of more than 50 employees to offer health insurance to those working 30 hours or more per week. Yep, pure coincidence, how moral is the media acting by not questioning the company on its outright lie as to the motivation of their decision? Huh Lanny?


Apparently you prefer paying for the uninsured freeloaders who go to the ER for a sore throat, to the tune of $14.1 BILLION in uncompensated hospital care in 2011 alone, representing 5.9% of annual hospital expenses (meaning: you and I pay it through higher medical/hospital costs, taxes, and insurance premiums). http://www.acainternational.org/...

Before you have a coronary, be careful who and what you criticize. It seems Paul Ryan, the conservative darling of the Tea Party, you know, those folks who HATE OBAMACARE, but when polled regarding specific provisions in the Affordable Care Act, overwhelmingly agree with it, admits that Republicans helped write Obamacare.


How moral of Ryan to use the media to confess his sins!

As for the bankrupting of the country, once again: In 2012, health care costs made up a whopping 24% of the federal budget; welfare - 12%. As for the trillions of federal debt, the biggest drivers are, according to the CBO:

1.) 2001-2003 tax cuts
2.) Iraq/Afghanistan Wars
3.) Medicare Part D
4.) TARP
5.) December 2010 tax legislation


Tri-cities realist

Hmm $14.1 Billion vs. what Obamacare will cost in both dollars and lost freedom... I'll take the status quo.

I don't care if someone is a conservative or not, if I think they are wrong, I will say so. (And I'm not saying Paul Ryan is wrong since I haven't been keeping up on everything he has said lately).

See no double standard here :-)

Tri-cities realist

And thank you once again for choosing to ignore my question, nor address the money that is being wasted on indoctrinating, err, educating the uninsured about Obamacare. The ACA is law, but do we really need to throw good money after bad, to educate people about the ACA? If people are so lazy that they won't do a little digging on their own, I say let them pay the fine, or appeal it, however that is accomplished. Paying a little "stupid tax", to borrow a term from Dave Ramsey, could be an educational experience for them. You lament me for being lazy in some of my arguments but when the uninsured are so lazy that we need to spend millions to find them, and sign them up, you have no problem? No hypocrisy there?

retired DOC

How do I get a job as a navigator? Of course it would only be part-time of less than 30 hours per week.

Tri-cities realist

Good point, the article didn't say whether these 70 positions were full time or not. But since unionized State of Michigan workers belong to either UAW Local 6000, Michigan State Employees Association AFSCME Local 5, Michigan Corrections Organization, Michigan Public Employees, or Michigan State Employees Association (there may be others, these were the big ones), I would hazard a guess that the unions fought to make these positions full time. If on the other hand, they are only part time, and limited to under 30 hours per week (oh the irony), it's still not a bad paycheck for working 3/4 of a week.


i thought this whole idea was bad from the start, Obama care, they already had the mediciade program setup, lets fire that back up and use the same formula to quilfiy these people, currently there is no coverage at all for people over 21, mostly clinics here is Ottawa co and muskegon family care, what i read the other day, there is no insurance companys lined up for type of coverage


More and more taxpayer funded beaurocracy

Tri-cities realist

Exactly. well kind of ;-)


Maybe the Senior Citizens who are seeing there Medicare Insurance coverage change and there premiums going up, and all while Social Security is going up a whopping 1.5 percent. Could sign up for some good health care coverage now but wait a second Congress does not even want Obama Care, oops.


FOX just announced that the "Navigators" won't even be required to undergo a background check. How comfortable will you be with such a person having nearly unlimited access to you most private personal information, i.e., health records, financial records, social security, etc.? Just wondering.

Tri-cities realist

We should be 100% comfortable since the benevolent govt would never do anything bad with our info, right?

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