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March 21, 2023
Public Health Emergency Planning header
A Message from the Executive Director, Kim Bimestefer

HCPF has been working tirelessly across many stakeholders, readying the state for the end of the public health emergency, and especially the end of continuous coverage. This month, HCPF, in collaboration with our county partners, will begin sending renewal notices and related information to all Health First Colorado (Colorado’s Medicaid program) and Child Health Plan Plus (CHP+) members scheduled for renewal in May. The renewal redetermination process will continue month by month, for the next 14 months through April 2024 for all 1.75 million members. 
Work with our federal partners at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has intensified in tandem for HCPF and for all state Medicaid programs nationally. Notably, CMS has established criteria that states must meet to continue to be eligible for enhanced federal matching funds through the end of December 2023. This enhanced match follows the 6.2% enhanced match in place from January 2020 through March 1, 2023, and includes 5.0% for calendar year Q2, 2.5% for Q3 and 1.5% for Q4 2023. CMS confirmed this week that HCPF is indeed fully compliant, that we do not have to implement mitigation steps as other states do, and that we are eligible for continued 2023 enhanced federal matching funds.
We invite you to take comfort in the fact that Colorado continues to lead other states in our readiness for this transition in coverage, estimated at more than 325,000 Coloradans. Our primary goal is to Keep Coloradans Covered through a two-pronged approach: (1) helping members who continue to be eligible for our programs stay enrolled, while (2) connecting disenrolling members to affordable coverage. Thank you in advance for being a part of our collaborative, united effort to achieve this shared goal across state agencies, health care providers, contracted partners, community partners, counties, regional accountable entities (RAEs), Connect for Health Colorado, consumer advocates, health plans and more. 
As part of this effort to Keep Coloradans Covered, we ask for your active engagement:
At every touchpoint and opportunity, please remind Health First Colorado and CHP+ members to take action. Please display this flyer (in English and Spanish) in areas of your organization frequented by members, patients or the public. The flyer includes what members need to do and how to do it. This link also includes KeepCOCovered awareness posters, social media images, virtual backgrounds and signature tags to assist in your organization’s engagement efforts. Find more at KeepCOCovered.com.
Please help connect those Coloradans who no longer qualify for our programs to alternative, affordable forms of health coverage such as employer-sponsored, Medicare, individual or family coverage and subsidies through Connect for Health Colorado, a spouse's coverage, or parental coverage for those up to age 26. Find tools to accomplish this shared goal and more at KeepCOCovered.com.
As you converse with members/patients, please communicate that the most important thing members can do right now is to update their mailing address, email and phone numbers and sign up for electronic notifications by visiting CO.gov/PEAK. Members who are having trouble accessing PEAK can call the PEAK Help Desk (800-250-7741). County human services departments can also help members update their information; however, members are likely to experience extended hold times, which is why we are recommending the use of PEAK. Second, remind members/patients to look for, complete and sign their Medicaid and CHP+ renewal packets. Members who receive a renewal packet must return it by the deadlines listed within this important renewal communication. The renewal packet will be sent electronically or through the mail in an envelope with red lettering reading - “URGENT - PLEASE REPLY” - to indicate the importance of the required, time-sensitive member action. For more information and videos in English and Spanish about the renewal process, please visit HealthFirstColorado.com/renewals. While about 70% of our members will need to take these actions, about 30% of our members will be automatically renewed without action due to our automation enhancements completed in the last year.
Last, please remind your members/patients to start exploring alternative coverage courses early if they think they will no longer qualify for our safety net coverages, and not to leave this exploration to the last minute. 
We appreciate your continued partnership in helping Keep Coloradans Covered as the public health emergency and the continuous coverage provision come to an end. For more information about the renewal process and frequently asked questions visit KeepCOCovered.com. The website includes information and links to numerous resources for stakeholders and community partners to help our members, and a virtual background and email signature to help get out the message. Additionally, here is a recording of our Feb. 24 Keep Coloradans Covered news conference and the related news release. At
HealthFirstColorado.com/renewals are plain language resources and links to help members with what they need to know about their renewals.

For more information about health insurance coverage types visit the Colorado Division of Insurance Types of Health Insurance Information page.
Partner Communication Toolkits and Resources

HCPF has been working with stakeholders and partners to develop a series of communication resources to prepare members for the return to normal renewal processes. All member-facing resources are available in English and Spanish.

The Take Action on Your Renewal toolkit launched in February 2023. The materials in this toolkit are designed to encourage members to look for their renewal packet in the mail and PEAK mailbox and take action when they get it. Included: website & newsletter text, social media, direct-to-member email and text messaging communications, & downloadable, customizable flyers.

The Preparing for Renewals toolkit includes renewal process education for partners assisting members in completing their renewals. Included: key terms, sample notices, & short videos in English and Spanish on key actions: updating an address, completing the renewal process, and transitioning to other coverage if a member no longer qualifies. 

We know that members may have moved over the past few years. It is crucial that we have correct addresses so that members get the information they need to keep or change their coverage. Update Your Address messaging is available in the top 11 languages.

As we return to normal renewal processes, our united goal is to #KeepCOCovered. Additional partner resources, including a flyer, website, email and social media messaging can be found at KeepCOCovered.com.  
For Members of Health First Colorado or CHP+

If you are a Health First Colorado or CHP+ member, please make sure your contact information is up to date in PEAK in case we need to send you a renewal packet. If you do not have a PEAK account, you can create one at CO.gov/PEAK. You can also contact your county to make sure your address and other contact information is up to date. You will receive a renewal packet in PEAK when your renewal date is approaching and through the Health First Colorado app if you are opted in. You can also see your renewal date in PEAK at any time. If you receive a renewal packet, make sure you fill it out, sign it, and return it by the due date. If you have questions about the renewal process, you can visit hfcgo.com/renewals.

Health First Colorado members have extended postpartum coverage for 12 months after their pregnancy ends. To get the extended coverage, they must update their PEAK account to declare their pregnancy. Please share this news with providers and members, and post these informational flyers in English and Spanish in shared spaces. Learn more by visiting the Health First Colorado webpage.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

I’ve heard the renewal forms are prepopulated, why are some areas on my renewal blank?
The prepopulated renewal packet may include some blank fields if HCPF does not have that specific information on file. See an example of a renewal packet.

How can I get help with questions about renewals or filling out my paperwork?
Contact your county eligibility worker at your local county human services department or call and make an appointment at a local certified application assistance site near you.

Is the Department renewing all members at the same time?
No, we are sending out notices based on that household’s existing renewal month. So if you were set to be renewed for coverage in November 2023, then you would receive your initial notices to take action 60-70 days prior to your renewal due date. Renewal packets are being sent in March 2023 only to individuals whose renewal date is May 2023.

Does the renewal month change for pregnant people given 12 months of continuous coverage following pregnancy?  
Yes. The renewal month will be 12 months after the pregnancy ends. So if a member’s prepregnancy renewal is due in July 2023 but their pregnancy ends in September 2023, their new renewal date will become September 2024.    

How will the Department reach me when it’s time to renew?
Depending on your communication preferences, you can get notifications about your renewal through mail, email, text message or by push notification if you have the Health First Colorado app. Learn how to update your contact information and communication preferences.
Partner Webinars

HCPF will be hosting quarterly informational sessions about the end of the Continuous Coverage Requirement and the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency. These webinars are geared toward community partners such as advocacy organizations, providers, and community organizations that may provide other assistance to Health First Colorado or CHP+ members (housing, social services, etc). 

Upcoming Webinar Information
When: April 26, 2023, 1 - 2:30 p.m. Mountain Time
Register in advance for this webinar: Zoom Registration.

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.

For the latest information on returning to normal renewal processes and other communication resources, visit the COVID-19 PHE Planning webpage.
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