Federal grant assists Atascosa Health Center enrollment process

Certified Application Counselor Mandy Luther helps Floresville resident Ivannia Pyeatt enroll in a health insurance plan at the Atascosa Health Center.

Certified Application Counselor Mandy Luther helps Floresville resident Ivannia Pyeatt enroll in a health insurance plan at the Atascosa Health Center.

San Antonio, Texas – Congressman Henry Cuellar (DTX28) and Monty Small, CEO of Atascosa Health Center, Inc. announced on Monday that Atascosa Health Center has earned a competitive federal grant of $63,995 from the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). Atascosa Health Center was one of 1,157 centers across the county that received $58 million in grant funding. With these funds, Atascosa Health Center will be able to expand its enrollment assistance efforts and help more Atascosa, McMullen, and Wilson County residents gain access to affordable health insurance. In July, Atascosa Health Center earned a grant of $120,215 in the first round of funding awarded by HHS.

“Local community centers like Atascosa Health Center are where the rubber hits the road in implementation of the new health insurance marketplace,” said Congressman Cuellar. “This investment means that health centers can provide expanded assistance for people in Atascosa County looking for resources to help them understand their insurance options and enroll in affordable coverage. It’s simple – when we help local organizations help themselves, they can provide the kind of face to face, personalized care and assistance that gives taxpayers the guidance they need to enroll in new plans. I congratulate Atascosa Health Center and its staff for the excellent job they have done in helping Atascosa County residents gain access to quality, affordable health care.”

Gloria Santos, a resident of Charlotte, is one of many people in Atascosa County who received one-on-one assistance from Atascosa Health Center. Ms. Santos, who had never before had health insurance, signed up for a plan with the help of the certified application counselors at Atascosa Health Center. According to Ms Santos, Health Center staff explained the whole application process and provided her with materials so that she could learn more about her options. Ms. Santos’s health care plan will begin on February 1st, 2014.

“Without the support and funding from HHS, Atascosa Health Center would be unable to provide the personal, one-to-one assistance that our residents need and deserve,” said Monty Small, CEO of the Atascosa Health Center. “For many of our residents this is the first time affordable health insurance has been available to their family. I want to let everyone know that our outreach and enrollment service is free and confidential. I urge anyone under the age of 65 to contact Angelica Garza to set up an appointment and learn how to become insured.”

Residents of Atascosa, Mc- Mullen and Wilson Counties can contact Angelica Garza, Outreach and Enrollment certified application counselor at 830-569-2527 or Mandy Luther at the Wilson Health Center at 830-393-9390 to set up an appointment. There is no fee for this assistance.

For a list of health centers receiving this funding, visit: www.hrsa.gov/about/ news/2013tables/outreachandenrollment/.

To learn more about the Affordable Care Act, visit www.HealthCare.gov. To learn more about HRSA’s Health Center Program, visit bphc.hrsa.gov/about/ index.html

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