Our boots on the ground: spreading the word about Maryland Health Connection

in-person helpYou work relentlessly, day in and day out providing assistance to our valued consumers. Health insurance is complicated from an outside perspective, and you know this. You’ve helped the single mom of three children determine that she qualifies for Medicaid, and the 26-year-old man who has no idea what he is doing to enroll in the proper plan. Whether it’s helping choose a plan, answering financial questions, or assisting in the application process, you truly do it all.

At Maryland Health Benefit Exchange, our objectives are to increase enrollment in qualified health plans, continue to implement targeted outreach to hard-to-reach uninsured Marylanders, increase understanding of Maryland Health Connection as a one-stop shop for health insurance, and build awareness and enrollment in SHOP. Without you, our partners, or better yet, our boots on the ground, we could not possibly carry out these goals.

You’re our key players when it comes to implementing our marketing strategies. We appreciate your participation and the knowledge you bring to our outreach events. When you work with our partners to attend events, it increases awareness of Maryland Health Connection and lets our consumers know how easy it is to find expert help. Looking ahead, we may ask you to partner with Maryland Insurance Administration (MIA), Department of Labor, Licensing, and Regulation (DLLR), and other valuable partners that share our mission.

Your partnership with the Maryland Insurance Administration (MIA) is collaborative. Attending events together benefits consumers, because many questions health insurance questions they have can be answered in one visit to your shared table. In partnership with Department of Labor, Licensing, and Regulation (DLLR), we may ask you to attend rapid response workshops. You will talk to employees facing layoffs about health insurance options when they lose their jobs. Your consumer assistance organization leader will distribute a Powerpoint presentation you can use to guide a discussion about the possible benefits of choosing a plan through Maryland Health Connection over COBRA coverage.

Maryland Health Connection sponsors events around the state that reach our target audiences: Young Invincibles (ages 18-34), Hispanics, and African Americans. We have sponsored Latino Festival, Baltimore Pride Parade, Cumberland Blues Festival, Brew at the Zoo, young adult sports leagues, and many more. Looking ahead, navigators may be asked to represent Maryland Health Connection at some of these events to raise awareness in their region about the importance of getting coverage.

A quick checklist for outreach events:

  1. Bring a Maryland Health Connection tablecloth.
  2. Bring timely and relevant MHC brochures, factsheets, and giveaway items.
  3. Dress and act professionally at all times.
  4. Always wear a smile, and be ready to educate consumers on the importance of health care.

Thank you for your continued effort to assist our valued customers and increase awareness of our state’s health insurance marketplace, Maryland Health Connection. For more information, contact Jenny Mancha, outreach coordinator, at jenny.mancha@maryland.gov.