NH Delegation Applauds $1.6 Million for New Hampshire Health Care Navigators Program

September 01, 2021

(Manchester, NH) – Today, U.S. Senators Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) and Maggie Hassan (D-NH) and Representatives Annie Kuster (NH-02) and Chris Pappas (NH-01) applauded the announcement that $1.6 million is heading to the state to support the Affordable Care Act (ACA) Navigators program. This program helps American families get information and support to find quality health care plans at affordable prices. 

Despite the program’s essential role helping families enroll in health care coverage that meets their needs, the Trump administration slashed funding by more than 80 percent and depleted New Hampshire of all Navigator programs. This $1.6 million grant will restore federal funding that was cut under the Trump administration and support community-based navigators across the state.

Through this grant, $1 million will be awarded to Health Market Connect. The remaining $600,000 will go to First Choice Services to continue remote services as well as establish community navigators across the state, including at the New Hampshire Foundation for Healthy Communities, Harbor Care and Lamprey. 

“The ACA Navigators program helps families find health care plans that are right for them at the price they can afford. I fought against the Trump administration’s repeated sabotage of the program, which left New Hampshire with no community navigators to help families navigate complex health insurance networks. That’s why I’m pleased to welcome $1.6 million to New Hampshire to right that wrong and connect more families with the health care they deserve,” said Shaheen. “Especially with open enrollment around the corner, this funding can’t come soon enough to revive this critical program in New Hampshire.”

“Affordable Care Act Navigators can help Granite Staters find more affordable health care plans that meet their needs, and I was deeply concerned by the previous administration’s decision to cut this important and commonsense program,” said Hassan. “I am very glad that New Hampshire is receiving this much-needed federal funding to build back the Navigator program, as well as continue remote services to help more Granite Staters get the health care that they need. I will continue working to expand access to high-quality, affordable health care to Granite State families and all Americans.”

“Ensuring families across New Hampshire are able to access health care coverage made possible through the Affordable Care Act is critical to the wellbeing of all Granite Staters —  this HHS funding will bolster Health Market Connect’s efforts as they help folks find the right ACA Marketplace plan for them and their families,” said Rep. Kuster, a member of the House Energy and Commerce Health Subcommittee. “I will continue working in Congress to ensure Granite Staters have access to the health care they need.” 

“As we approach the annual open enrollment period this fall, it’s essential that Granite Staters understand their health care options and are able to access enrollment assistance,” said Rep. Pappas. “I’m pleased that this grant funding for outreach and education is being provided to New Hampshire to ensure residents are able to sign up for a plan that meets their needs. I’ll continue to fight to see that affordable health care is within reach of all Granite Staters which is essential to build a healthy, prosperous future for our families and communities."

“With the award of this grant, Health Market Connect will make health insurance more accessible for Granite Staters. By bringing back an in-state presence of ACA Navigators, our team is uniquely positioned to reach the diverse, underserved, and vulnerable communities across the State. We look forward to working with hospitals, health centers, and other community stakeholders to reduce the number of people without health insurance and create healthier communities across New Hampshire,” said Elias Ashooh, the Project Director of Health Market Connect.

Shaheen and Hassan worked with a group of Senators led by Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) and Bob Casey (D-PA) to introduce the Expand Navigators’ Resources for Outreach, Learning, and Longevity (ENROLL) Act to restore funding for the Navigator program. Shaheen previously introduced legislation to counteract the Trump administration’s sabotage efforts that blocked Americans from having the help or information they need to find the best health care plans. Shaheen’s Marketing and Outreach Restoration to Empower (MORE) Health Education Act would have ensured funds for outreach, marketing and education efforts to promote health insurance coverage offered on the federal health insurance marketplaces established by the Affordable Care Act.   

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