Oregon Health Authority Calling Everyone in Oregon Medical Insurance High Risk Pool

State officials hope to have contacted everyone by Nov. 25
If you are an Oregon Medical Insurance Pool member, Cover Oregon has been trying to get a message to you: “pick up your phone, we want to talk.” 
The Oregon Health Authority, working with Portland-based healthcare group Project Access NOW, has undertaken a campaign to personally call every one of the 10,000 people in the Oregon high-risk pool in order to check on the status of their application for health insurance. 
Officials hope to have checked in with every member by Nov. 25, the submission deadline for Cover Oregon that guarantees coverage beginning New Year’s Day. The stakes are high. People who fail to meet that deadline could find themselves without insurance by the beginning of next year, a potentially dangerous scenario for the many high-risk patients with chronic health conditions.
“In light of the current situation Cover Oregon is aggressively communicating with Oregon Medical Insurance Pool clients,” Kimberly Mounts, Oregon Health Authority Communications Officer, told The Lund Report. “We want to make sure their applications will be in.”
To manage the calls the Oregon Health Authority has partnered with Project Access NOW, which connects uninsured people with health care. Executive Director Linda Nilsen-Solares said her group has been in contact with around 200 people in the high-risk pool. 
“Most of the people we call are already on top of it,” said Nilsen-Solares, “but a smaller percentage of people do need help. The problem is that we don’t know who those people are. That is why we are calling everybody, just to check in. We don’t want anyone to fall into the cracks.”
Cover Oregon’s application is available online here (link: http://www.coveroregon.com/get-started/overview
) . Currently the completed application must be printed and mailed or faxed in. Cover Oregon is also hosting “application fairs” in five cities across the state in the next week for people who need assistance or advice applying (link: http://www.eventbrite.com/org/4266742581?s=19572379&current=1
) .
There are three key deadlines that current Oregon Medical Insurance Pool members must meet to guarantee coverage Jan. 1. By Nov. 25 patients must have submitted an application for insurance. By Dec. 15 patients must have chosen an insurance plan. The first month’s premium is due Dec. 31.
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