Agencies Collaborate to Explain Health Care Reform

Do you have questions about health care reform?

Community Health Advocates, AIDS Community Resources and the Syracuse Northeast Community Center offer a service to guide groups or individuals through the maze of present day health care and the changes coming with the new health care law.

Community Health Advocate Coordinator Steve Wood of AIDS Community Resources says many don’t know what health care reform means. “Because it is such a politically charged debate, many people don’t have rational information on the Affordable Care Act.”

Key facts:

• You are not going to lose your insurance through your employer.
• You may have to buy insurance.
• Kids can stay on parents’ insurance until they are 26.
• Many, many more people will qualify for public insurance programs, like Medicaid, Child Health Plus, and Family Health Plus, than ever before.
• Insurance companies will be less likely to deny claims as more procedures will be covered.

Wood and Community Health Advocate Dave Pasinski of Northeast Community Center provide one-hour presentations on what the Affordable Care Act is; what it is not; and how it benefits you, your family and your community.

“My experiences on the clinical side of health care acquainted me with the worries people have about medical coverage,” said Dave Pasinski, former Sr. Chaplain with Hospice of CNY. “We are especially pleased to offer services for Spanish speaking individuals throughout Onondaga County.”

Advocates provide individual help to people who need to know what options they have in regards to insurance, drug coverage, prescription benefit and discount programs, and where to find no or low cost care.

“Advocates are a great resource for people who may be having trouble with health care regardless of who they are, what their income is and the state of their health,” said AIDS Community Resources Executive Director, Michael Crinnin. “This program is not specific to people with HIV, it is open to everyone.”

Community Health Advocate services are available at no cost throughout ACR’s nine-county service area in the Central, Northern, and Mohawk Valley regions of New York State. To learn more or schedule an session, contact Steve Wood at (315) 475-2430 ext. 258.


Community Health Advocate Services at ACR

Prescription Assistance: ACR’s Community Health Advocates can assist in finding the best prices on prescriptions, tell you about different discount prescription programs, and help you sign up for co-pay assistance programs.

Community and Professional Presentations

One hour sessions include:
Healthcare Reform – Although the Affordable Care Act does not fully take effect until 2014, some changes that impact health insurance and health care have taken place already. Learn the rationale behind health reform, how it impacts all New Yorkers and the proposed changes in health insurance rules for families, children, young adults, seniors and women’s health.

Prescription Benefits – Learn about various prescription benefit programs in New York State and what people can do if they cannot afford medications. There are many programs available to all New York State residents regardless of age, sex or medical diagnosis that help with co-pays, and sometimes the entire cost of your drugs.

Medicare: The Basics – This broad overview will explain the different parts to Medicare, how individuals apply, what Medicare Advantage plans how, how to negotiate coverage gaps and what co-pays may be involved.

Options for the Uninsured – Learn about various state and federal programs that provide insurance coverage, as well as private programs that assist in insurance coverage. This session also covers different prescription discount programs available to New York State residents. (This session can be modified to focus on issues related to those living with HIV as well as immigrants.)

Women’s Reproductive Health and Insurance – What types of public insurance are available to women in regards to their reproductive health? Learn how women and their dependent children can apply for a variety of insurance programs like Medicaid, Medicare, Family Health Plus, Child Health Plus and more. Learn what types of contraception and testing are covered as well as pregnancy termination and OB/GYN care.


— Information provided by AIDS Community Resources

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