Insurance event scheduled
by Paisley Boston
Feb 18, 2014 | 1287 views | 0 0 comments | 16 16 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Congressman Bennie Thompson is set to make an appearance in Mound Bayou on Saturday.

"Congressman Thompson is coming to encourage citizens to enroll in the new health insurance marketplace. He has partnered with Humana, Mississippi Health Advocacy, churches and the University of Mississippi Medical Center to help host this event," Chief Operating Officer Neuaviska Stidhum.

"We are very excited about Thompson's visit but we are even more excited about being able to service our community. We just want to let our citizens know that we are here and we are ready to help them," she added.

Navigators and application counselors will accompany Thompson during his visit to help citizens choose a health plan in the new health insurance marketplace.

Delta Health Center is hosting the event from 8 a.m. until 10 a.m., as part of efforts to enroll citizens before the rapidly approaching deadline to apply for health insurance through the market place.

"A person's health is the most important thing in the world — this insurance will afford people the opportunity that they have never had," she continued.

According to Stidhum, this event will be nothing new to the Delta Health Center because employees have been in the process of enrolling citizens for some time now.

"We have enrolled over 300 people and we have over 720 potentially enrollees. As of now, the people that we have enrolled are very happy with the insurance – some of them are only paying $5 per month," said Stidhum.

Stidhum said the Delta Health Center has certified personnel that will help enroll patients and citizens.

"Citizens are welcomed to come any day of the week and enroll. We even have counselors and navigators that are able to assist in the homes — we primarily do this during the day," she added.

Stidhum said although she and her staff work diligently to enroll residents, she has found that there is one issue that they are unable to assist them with.

"There are a lot of residents in Bolivar County that do not qualify — this is one of the most problematic issues going on right now," she added.

Open enrollment ends March 31 and in order to buy health insurance outside of the enrollment date, an individual must qualify for a special enrollment period due to a qualifying life event such as marriage, divorce, birth or adoption or loss of job.

Some Americans have been ignoring the warnings about upcoming penalties if they fail to purchase insurance; there is no way around it.

If a person fails to enroll in health insurance he or she could face a serious penalty with lasting affects.

In the first year, one percent of a person's yearly household income or $95 per person will be taken — this is the maximum penalty for the national average yearly for individuals who have the bronze insurance plan.

"People are required to have at least an annual income of $15,000 and people who do not have this fall between the cracks of Medicaid, no Medicaid and no insurance. I don’t really think much about the penalties that individuals have to pay as a result of them not having insurance, I think about the health aspect," she added.

Stidhum said Delta Health center is also going to churches and assisting members with enrollment.

"The insurance will offer them so many opportunities for coverage and preventative services. We want individuals to get health insurance because everyone needs health insurance and we also need to think about the preventive services," she added.

For more information, contact the Thompson at 1-800-355-9003.