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Health News Florida

USF Program Gets $250,000 Boost For ACA Enrollment Efforts

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Florida Covering Kids & Families
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Florida Covering Kids & Families was one of 30 “navigators” nationwide to receive additional federal funding for a 2021 special enrollment period.

A Tampa-based organization will get a $250,000 infusion to help uninsured residents find health care coverage over the next 10 weeks, President Joe Biden’s administration announced Monday.

Florida Covering Kids & Families was one of 30 “navigators” nationwide to receive additional funding for a 2021 special enrollment period, which began Feb. 15 and will end May 15. But it was only one of two navigators to receive $250,000, the highest amount awarded.

Before Monday’s announcement, Florida Covering Kids & Families had spearheaded the state’s navigator efforts with a $1.6 million budget.

In all, the Biden administration announced Monday that roughly $2.3 million in additional funds were being made available to navigators.

Florida Covering Kids & Families works collaboratively with Florida agencies and stakeholders to advocate and conduct outreach to ensure all Floridians have access to affordable health care coverage. The program is based at the University of South Florida College of Public Health.

By the end of last year’s enrollment period, 2,120,350 Floridians got coverage through a health insurance exchange that is part of the federal Affordable Care Act. That's more than any other state, with Texas second at 1,291,972 enrollees.

Nationwide, more than 8.2 million people enrolled in the federal health exchange for what is known as Obamacare coverage.

Biden in January announced that he was reopening enrollment as part of COVID-19 recovery efforts.

Meanwhile, federal Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services Acting Deputy Administrator Jeff Wu said in a statement Monday the federal government plans to “significantly increase” the amount of funding for navigators for 2022 enrollment efforts and that it will publish a notice with the funding details in the spring.