Local health organizations meet to prepare for 2017 Marketplace enrollment


HATTIESBURG, Miss. - Health Help Mississippi and the Mississippi Health Advocacy program met to assist consumers for next year's market coverage.

The meeting focused on how organizations can help Marketplace customers re-enroll and stay enrolled in Marketplace coverage.

Roy Mitchell Executive Director with Mississippi Health Advocacy program said, "Mississippi has a very low retention rate in the marketplace, meaning people enroll and then they fall out of the marketplace."

Mitchell said Mississippi is probably one of the worst in the country with retention rates.

He said, "We are encouraging people to be proactive, if you have coverage in the marketplace, look at your plan, see if that plan still works for you."

Health officials said a lot of Mississippians do not understand their coverage.

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Deric Gilliard said, "Consumers should understand on the front end, when they enroll for insurance, understand about copays, about premiums...not necessarily choosing the least expensive plan."

Officials said its a collaborative effort to make sure consumers stay enrolled.

"We are encouraging all of the navigators in the front end to make sure people are as knowledgeable and as confident at what they are doing as possible" said Gilliard.

Mitchell added, "Consumers need to take a hands-on approach when shopping for their health coverage this year and every year, and the best way to do that is to seek help from a local in-person assister."

Consumers can call Health Help Mississippi (601) 264-8686 for assistance on insurance plans and questions about their existing plans.

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