Health Insurance Options for American Indians & Alaska Natives

MAYETTA:  The Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) Division of Tribal Affairs has provided a video entitled: New Path to Healthcare, narrated by Hattie Kaufman (Nez Perce Tribe).  The video was produced specifically for tribal communities to provide an overview of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and the specific provisions for American Indians and Alaska Natives (AI ANs).  The video contains information on how to apply for a Marketplace health plan, Medicaid or CHIP; and how to file for a tribal exemption from the shared responsibility payment.

THe ACA does not change AI ANs eligibility to get health services through the Indian Health Service, or tribal or urban Indian health programs.  AI ANS who enroll in a Marketplace health plan, Medicaid or CHIP, can continue to receive services from their Indian healthcare provider the same way they do now.  But by enrolling in the Marketplace, Medicaid or CHIP,  AI ANs benefit by having greater access to services that may not be provided by their local Indian health care provider, and tribal communities benefit through increased resources to their local health program.

For most individuals, the open enrollment period for the ACA closes March 31, 2014.  However, there is a special monthly enrollment period for tribal members and shareholders of Alaska Native regional and village corporations.  And for Medicaid and CHIP, there is no open enrollment period-individuals may apply anytime.

The video can be seen on You Tube that is linked below: