In less than a week, a customer service center in Butte County will open to take health care enrollment calls under the federal Affordable Care Act, more commonly known as “Obamacare”. The center is expected to be operational by October 1.
“Our core mission is to serve low-income children, families and individuals,” said Cathi Grams, Butte County Department of Employment and Social Service Director. “We are very excited to be part of an effort that will reduce the number of uninsured people in Butte County.”
The service center is part of the state’s compliance with the federal health reform law which includes expanding Medi-Cal. The center will be staffed with 12 employees and will be located at the Community Employment Center located at 78 Table Mountain Blvd in Oroville. According to the center’s press release, the service center will be one of 32 county centers and three state centers that will handle enrollment statewide. The staff will be in charge of screening callers for Medi-Cal benefits and enroll them in other insurance plans if deemed necessary.
Citizens can apply by mail, phone, online or in person. Staff will also be available to help with enrollment in both community employment centers in Oroville and Chico. The Chico Employment Center is located at 2445 Carmichael Drive. Both employment centers are open Monday through Friday from 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Those interested can also explore options and enroll online at www.coveredca.com.
“The county has been working since the beginning of the year to prepare for implementation and we feel confident that our piece in this effort is ready to go,” said Grams. “We won’t know how well everything will fit together however until October 1st and will undoubtedly have bumps that we and our partners will need to resolve in the coming months.”