SACRAMENTO, Calif. – Covered California is accepting applications for the Outreach and Education Grants program to help reach millions of uninsured and subsidy eligible Californians about their affordable health care options that will be available to them starting in 2014. The deadline for grant applications is March 4, 2013.Covered California has dedicated $43 million in funding over two years for community organizations that can reach Californians of all walks of life where they live, work, play and shop.
“We are excited about building on the interest and partnerships we’ve built with organizations across the state and encourage groups to apply for this funding,” said Peter V. Lee, Executive Director of Covered California. “We understand that California’s diversity as well as its geography presents a unique challenge to our efforts to enroll as many eligible individuals as possible. It is critical to the success of Covered California that we work with organizations with trusted relationships in diverse communities throughout the state that can educate Californians about the new health insurance options that will be available to them starting in 2014.”
The grant program was created in an effort to elicit the help of trusted organizations to assist with enrolling as many Californians as possible in high-quality health insurance. The goal is to disseminate clear, accurate and consistent messages to target audiences that eliminates barriers, increases interest and motivates consumers and small businesses to enroll in healthcare coverage.
Of the $43 million available, $40 million will be distributed to organizations that target consumers eligible for health care enrollment through Covered California. The remaining $3 million will be dedicated to organizations targeting small businesses eligible to provide coverage to employees through the Small Business Health Options Program (SHOP).
Entities eligible to apply for funding include: community, consumer-focused or advocacy nonprofit organizations; faith-based organizations; trade, industry or professional associations; labor unions; chambers of commerce; health care providers; higher education institutions; Tribal organizations; and city or other county government agencies.
The funding may be made available in two cycles. Cycle 1 applications are due March 4, 2013. Based on responses and potential need, and in an effort to ensure maximum coverage, a Cycle 2 application is targeted for release in late May 2013. Covered California is planning to work with organizations that do not receive funding to provide educational material and other support so they can do accurate outreach even if they are not funded.
For more information on where to apply and to access the application, please visit http://www.healthexchange.ca.gov/Pages/OutrchandEdProg.aspx.
About Covered California
California was the first state to create a health benefit exchange following the passage of federal health care reform. Covered California is charged with creating a new insurance marketplace in which individuals and small businesses can get access to health insurance. With coverage starting in 2014, Covered California will help individuals compare and choose a health plan that works best for their health needs and budget. Financial subsidies will be available to help lower costs for people who qualify on a sliding scale. Small businesses will be able to purchase competitively priced health plans and offer their employees the ability to choose from an array of plans and may qualify for federal tax credits.
Covered California is overseen by a five-member board appointed by the Governor and Legislature; the California Health and Human Services Secretary serves as an ex officio voting member and is its current Chair.
For more information on Covered California, please visit www.healthexchange.ca.gov.
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