|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 20, 2007
City’s Public Hospitals Aim to
Reduce Number of Uninsured
HHC to increase children’s access to affordable healthcare
during National Cover the Uninsured Week, April 23- 29
New York City - The New York City Health and Hospitals Corporation (HHC) invites all New Yorkers without health insurance to visit enrollment health fairs hosted by HHC hospitals, and health centers in the five boroughs to learn how to access affordable healthcare during Cover the Uninsured Week - April 23-29. This year’s efforts will focus on enrolling the City’s uninsured children. In 2006, HHC’s Medicaid managed care partners, MetroPlus and HealthFirst, enrolled nearly 37,000 uninsured children in Child Health Plus, New York State’s managed care program.
“Increasing access to healthcare for those who otherwise cannot afford it is central to our mission,” said HHC President Alan D. Aviles. “Too often, uninsured New Yorkers come to rely on hospital emergency rooms for their family’s basic care or when there’s a medical emergency. Our child health centers can help children of low-income families enroll in Medicaid or Child Health Plus and our HHC Options Program allows many more uninsured families and working poor to have access to affordable healthcare, regardless of immigration status or ability to pay.”
HHC will host events at hospitals, health centers and at local churches across the City to enroll families, single adults and children who qualify, in government-sponsored insurance plans, including New York State’s Child Health Plus which provides health coverage to children whose parents are either not offered health insurance for their children through their job, or who cannot afford to purchase insurance.
In addition, through the HHC charity care program, HHC Options, public hospitals offer financial assistance in many languages to families and single adults who do not qualify for government sponsored-insurance and cannot afford to purchase insurance. HHC Options offers low fees and manageable payment plans based on family income and size. In FY 2006, HHC Options assisted nearly 71,000 patients to access health care.
Nearly 46 million Americans are uninsured and 9 million are children. There are an estimated 1.8 million uninsured in New York State -- 400,000 are children. Cover the Uninsured Week is a national independent effort to encourage leaders to find solutions to problems facing the uninsured.
HHC Cover the Uninsured Week events will offer families an opportunity to enroll in health insurance plans for children and adults and will feature important health screenings including blood pressure, diabetes and asthma as well as vision and hearing tests. There will also be activities for children including face painting and raffles, at many locations. For a list of HHC Cover the Uninsured Week events visit nyc.gov/hhc.
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The New York City Health and Hospitals Corporation (HHC), the largest municipal hospital and health care system in the country, is a $4.9 billion public benefit corporation that serves 1.3 million New Yorkers and nearly 400,000 who are uninsured. HHC provides medical, mental health and substance abuse services through its 11 acute care hospitals, four skilled nursing facilities, six large diagnostic and treatment centers and more than 80 community based health centers. For more information about HHC, visit nyc.gov/hhc.