As ACA Sign-ups Start, Calif. Navigators are on the Streets and at Point-of-Care Screening and Enrolling Uninsured with PointCare Technology

SAN MATEO, Calif., Oct. 1, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- As enrollment for the Affordable Care Act begins today, health care providers in California are reaching out in two big ways. On the streets of South El Monte, Clinics Community Outreach Worker, Jacqueline Gallardo, with iPad in hand, educates and enrolls residents about new coverage options. At four busy San Diego hospital ERs, Gerilynn Sevenikar, Vice President of Hospital Revenue Cycle at Sharp HealthCare, makes sure those uninsured who are seeking treatment have the option to enroll in new coverage plans during their visit. Enrolling Californians at the point–of-care in hospitals and during community outreach efforts is how California providers are bringing more people into the system and helping their bottom lines.

The 90-second enrollment process is made possible by using the web-based screening, navigation, and enrollment software, PointCarePA, which not only incorporates Medicaid, guarantee issue private plans, and each state's ACA-Exchange options, but also takes into consideration additional state and federal programs, as well as facility charity care and grant programs. "As it's currently being set up, Americans visiting their state exchange website looking for insurance will only be introduced to each state's ACA-sponsored Platinum, Gold, Silver and Bronze coverage plans and screened for Medicaid," said Ankeny Minoux, COO of PointCare. "These uninsured individuals may be missing valuable opportunities for assistance from additional government-sponsored plans, local charity care programs, and possible COBRA or other guarantee issue private coverage. This is what PointCare offers."       

PointCarePA organizes the fragmented health coverage system by providing real-time eligibility, coverage, and application information for several thousand U.S. health coverage programs. To date, more than 500,000 residents have been screened with the tool and given the ability to successfully navigate the complex health insurance system.

Clinics Enrolling at Health Fairs, Community Events, & through Mobile Vans

Community Health Alliance of Pasadena's (ChapCare) community outreach effort includes dispensing enrollment teams armed with PointCarePA's 5-step health coverage screening tool loaded on tablets accompanied with portable printers. The non-profit health system has already signed up thousands of Los Angeles County residents ahead of the October 1st deadline (funded through a special ACA state waiver) by offering health coverage screenings using PointCarePA at enrollment kiosks, within mobile vans, and during friendly conversations on the street.

"Our community-based effort has been made possible because PointCarePA only requires a simple 90-second conversation with an uninsured resident to identify their potential eligibility for coverage," said Steven Abramson, ChapCare Marketing Manager.  During this conversation, residents are asked five basic questions about themselves, their health, and their household. Once complete, each participant is given a personalized print out of health plans and coverage options, along with program applications, to start the enrollment process. 

Enrolling Patients in Hospital Emergency Rooms 

Using PointCarePA, San Diego-based Sharp HealthCare has been educating patients seeking treatment in its four emergency rooms about their health coverage eligibility for the past three years.  Sharp has refined both its patient-centered approach of identifying coverage and its admitting protocols and financial systems, to make certain that every uninsured and self-pay patient within the ER is given a personalized list of coverage options at the point-of-care or during a follow-up call with a financial counselor. 

"With PointCarePA's assistance, Sharp has been able to increase reimbursement rates of those previously uninsured, while also helping to educate its community on their insurance options," said Sevenikar. "With the Affordable Care Act just around the corner, Sharp HealthCare is excited about moving forward with using PointCarePA. We anticipate that many community members will be looking to our staff for answers on what new coverage options are available, and PointCarePA is going to help us be able to assist those patients with confidence and compassion."

Founded in 2012, PointCare is a patient advocacy-based software company, dedicated to helping hospitals, community health centers, doctors, and third party vendors educate uninsured patients about health coverage options at point-of-care and during community outreach. For more information, please visit, email [email protected], or call 650-762-1928.