Q: At present, asylum seekers in Maine who are over age 21 do not have coverage under MaineCare. However, pregnant women and children up to age 21 do have coverage under MaineCare. How are pregnant women and children up to age 21 impacted by the end of the public health emergency? Do they need to transition to other insurance?
A: Those who have gained MaineCare regardless of their immigration status, who are under 21 years old, will go through a renewal. This is true regardless of their immigration status.
Pregnant people who picked up MaineCare despite their immigration status will lose their coverage at the end of the month in which they give birth, or the pregnancy ends. None of them will have coverage long enough to go through the renewal process. For all other pregnant people, their renewal should happen at the end of the 12-month postpartum period.
Those who complete their renewal on time with the Maine Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), and lose MaineCare, will have their information transferred to CoverME.gov, which will connect them to the federal Affordable Healthcare Act’s health insurance enrollment options. Those who are eligible for health insurance through CoverME.gov can use the Recently Lost MaineCare Special Enrollment Period (see www.coverme.gov/MaineCare-Loss). The Special Enrollment Period is running from April 15, 2023, through July 31, 2024. Former MaineCare members can report the loss of MaineCare before it ends so that they can avoid a gap in coverage. Once their application is submitted through this special enrollment period, they have 60 days to complete their health plan enrollment. Coverage starts on the first of the month after they’ve completed the enrollment.
Those who fail to complete their renewal on time will not have their information transferred to CoverME.gov. They have a 90-day reconsideration period in which they can return their renewal form with updated information and see if they are still MaineCare eligible. CoverME.gov is working on a plan with the DHHS Office of Family Independence to help those who lose MaineCare after they’ve returned their renewal in that 90-day reconsideration period.
(This information was provided by Consumers for Affordable Health Care)