A Special Enrollment Period for Maine People Transitioning from MaineCare is Now Open

April 21, 2023

Hello, this is Governor Janet Mills and thank you for listening.

After declaring a national public health emergency in March of 2020, the Federal government suspended certain eligibility requirements for Medicaid health care coverage, known as MaineCare here in Maine.

This move was to ensure that people would not lose access to health care during this public health crisis.

Late last year, Congress voted to restore those basic eligibility requirements starting this month, including here in Maine. As a result, the Maine Department of Health and Human Services has begun to notify people who are enrolled in MaineCare that it is time to apply for renewal. This notification will continue through the summer of 2024, the end of the so-called “unwinding” or transition period.

If you are a MaineCare member and haven’t yet received your notice, you should check to see if your contact information is up to date. Visit MyMaineConnection.gov. That’s MyMaineConnection.gov. Or calling 1-855-797-4357. 1-855-797-4357. When it is time to renew, look out for an envelope with a blue block, which will have information and instructions inside. If you signed up for e-notices, you should also keep an eye on your email for a message.

Once you submit your renewal application, which is vital to continuing coverage if you’re eligible, the Department will determine if you are eligible for coverage.

But look, even if you are not eligible to stay on MaineCare—maybe your earnings increased, maybe you’re working and earning a salary that makes you ineligible, or maybe you’ve had a change in family status, we want you to keep working, continue working, and there’s good news. National estimates indicate that 90 percent of people who lose Medicare eligibility (MaineCare eligibility) will receive coverage through other sources. Other insurance is available, either through your employment or through CoverME.gov – Maine’s health insurance marketplace.

The Department of Health and Human Services has opened a Special Enrollment Period through CoverME.gov for people who might lose their MaineCare eligibility during the transition period. During this Special Enrollment Period, which began April 15 and will continue through July 31, 2024, anyone who has lost their MaineCare coverage can sign up for private health care plans through CoverME.gov – and you may find financial assistance or subsidy for that insurance, too.

You can browse plan options and options for financial assistance for private coverage at CoverMe.gov.

Well, you don’t have to wait for your MaineCare coverage to end to apply for other health insurance on CoverME.gov. You can visit CoverME.gov to create or log into an account, submit or review your application, and select “Recently lost MaineCare” from a list of Special Enrollment Periods. When you complete the application, CoverME.Gov will determine if you are eligible for financial assistance to lower your health care premium or lower your out-of-pocket costs.

This is all about making sure that you and your family don’t lose health insurance—health insurance which can save your life!

My Administration is committed to ensuring that Maine people can afford to go to the doctor, or the dentist, or fill their prescriptions, and get any treatment you need to stay healthy, no matter what the federal government does with MaineCare, or Medicaid.

This Special Enrollment Period is just the latest way we are ensuring Maine people keep their health care coverage as the federal public health emergency comes to an end. You can learn more about the steps we are taking at MaineCare.gov/unwinding.

This is Governor Janet Mills and thank you for listening.

Happy Earth Day, and to the schoolkids who go back to school next week, I hope you had a great school vacation.

Go Bruins and Go Celtics, too!