Since April 2023, nearly equal numbers of Coloradans have been disenrolled and renewed from Medicaid as the government unwind of continuous coverage progresses. During the pandemic, the government suspended the annual Medicaid renewal process, ensuring continued coverage for all who qualified. However, following the declared end of the COVID-19 public health emergency, the government began terminating the practice.
“This change puts people at risk of having a gap in their health insurance coverage if they do not renew on time or do not complete their renewal packet correctly,” said Kyler Hijmans, a family nurse practitioner at Vail Health.
In Eagle County, there are several resources available to help with both open enrollment and Medicaid enrollment. Vail Health is a Certified Application Assistance Site in the state. Hijmans said this makes the organization “authorized by the Colorado Department of Health Care Policy and Financing to assist residents of Colorado with applications for medical benefits.”
Since 2021, when Vail Health’s community outreach team began this work, it has helped 695 people enroll in Medicaid, Hijmans said. The team’s community health specialists arrange meetings not only at the hospital but also at community-based locations. It also works with Eagle Valley Community Foundation’s MIRA Bus to “provide walk-in services for anyone who has questions about Medicaid enrollment or would like to apply,” Hijmans said.