Time is running out for health care enrollment: QOLHS can help


Time is running out to enroll in the Marketplace insurance plans available at healthcare.gov. 

As a result, Quality of Life Health Services, Inc. continues to try to reach as many people as possible. The health care service provider could find no better way to do that than to attend the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Health Fair at Gadsden State on Jan. 20. 

“Many people do not recall Dr. King’s commitment to health care – he once said that the inequality in health care is the most inhuman of any unequal treatment in our society” said Amelia Wofford, Planning & Development Officer for Quality of Life Health Services, Inc. (QOLHS) who represented the health center at the MLK event. 

The organizers thought it was an important feature to bring to the event, so Tarva Vaughn approached Wofford about being a guest speaker for the event. 

QOLHS was awarded a grant to hire certified application counselors and consumer assisters to help inform community residents about the Affordable Care Act (ACA) coverage and to actually sign individuals up for programs.  With all the glitches to the healthcare.gov website gone,  QOLHS is attempting to engage as many individuals as possible in the registration process to secure insurance before the open enrollment period ends on March 31, 2014.

Because QOLHS is committed to offering outpatient primary health care, and this has been and continues to be our main mission.  But, as our medical and dental providers seek to assist patients, there are often many more patient needs that cannot be met in the primary care setting. 

Then, providers are faced with the challenge of getting patients accepted into specialty care, inpatient care or other services.  Under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and the Marketplace, uninsured individuals can purchase insurance coverage which will encompass ten (10) essential benefits (Outpatient care, emergency care, hospitalization, maternity care, mental health and substance abuse treatment, prescription drugs, rehabilitation services and devices, laboratory services, prevention and wellness services and pediatric services – including oral and vision).

The Outreach and Enrollment Grant is giving Quality of Life the greatest opportunity ever to increase TOTAL access to health care. 

It has the potential to make the Primary Care Medical Home model work so much more effectively, because insured patients can more easily be routed into needed specialty care and inpatient care.  Insured patients will be able to afford lab and prescription drugs and can access mental health and substance abuse services – and so much more.  

Quality of Life Health Services, Inc. (QOLHS) is a network of twenty-one (21) community health centers located in northeastern Alabama.  For over thirty-five years, the organization has been committed to provide quality medical, dental, pharmacy and optometry services. 

The Gadsden/Etowah County area has always been the center of the company’s network.  Certified Application Counselors are available at all QOLHS sites in the service area for the purpose of educating the public about the Health Care Marketplace and actually walking individuals through the enrollment process. 

Wofford said that is critical in the few remaining months to “get the word out” about the Affordable Care Act.  Groups interested in having a speaker to talk about Enroll Alabama can contact Michelle Funderburg at 256-492-0131.

Appointments can also be scheduled for a one-on-one session with a counselor.  For more information about enrollment assistance, please call 256-492-0131.

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