RALEIGH, NC – December 20, 2023 – The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (NCDHHS) has a new dashboard to track enrollment each month for people who have obtained health coverage from the expansion of Medicaid. It can be found at medicaid.ncdhhs.gov/reports. The Dashboard will show enrollment trends. It has a breakdown by county and by many demographics. The first Medicaid expansion (ME) enrollees lost their full-benefit Medicaid insurance when the COVID national emergency ended in April because they made too much money. However, HHS enrolled these people in a limited Medicaid benefit plan that provides family planning benefits for people who make up to 195 percent of the federal poverty level. There are almost 300 thousand North Carolinians, including more than 6 thousand people from Buncombe County, who were automatically enrolled in Medicaid.
On December 1st, North Carolina officially became the 40th state to expand Medicaid, the federal program for health insurance for low-resource individuals. ME was in the Affordable Care Act of 2010 and left to each state to decide in a subsequent Supreme Court ruling. The ME bill was passed by the General Assembly in March and tied to the state budget that was passed in September.
ME increases health care access to eligible North Carolinians ages 19-64 and their families with earnings between 100 to 138 percent of the federal poverty level. It is estimated that 600 thousand more North Carolinians will be eligible for Medicaid, including almost 17 thousand from Buncombe County. Preparation has included enrollment events, training for groups that provide services to Medicaid beneficiaries, and hiring staff to register eligible people.
There are many ways to apply for NC Medicaid. Applications can be taken by phone, email, fax, or in person. Buncombe County residents can apply for Medicaid online and at any time at ePASS.NC.gov. Applications can be done in-person at the HHS Building on 40 Coxe Avenue in downtown Asheville, by calling 828-250-5500, or by mail. A printable application can be obtained online at the NCDHHS website.
Kody Kinsley, the head of the NCDHHS, recently released a statement, “Hundreds of people each day are gaining health care coverage and getting the care they need. Our work continues with state and community partners to support enrollment efforts to ensure as many people as possible can get covered.”
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Contact: Dr. Dick Needleman, Health reporter, 103.3 AshevilleFM, firstname.lastname@example.org