What Is Community Health Choice?

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Community health choice is a non-profit organization providing access to affordable health care in their local community. Their services include CHIP, STAR programs, Marketplace coverage, and long-term support services.

Since 1997, they have maintained their mission: making healthcare accessible and affordable to people living in Southeast Texas.

Psychiatrists

Psychiatrists are physicians who specialize in diagnosing and treating emotional, mental, and behavioral health conditions. They offer their services in hospitals, private practices, community health centers and cooperate with physicians treating other conditions (e.g., pediatricians, obstetricians, oncologists, and gynecologists). Psychotherapy and medication may be employed to assist their patients in managing symptoms. Furthermore, Psychiatrists conduct research and teach medical students and healthcare providers.

Psychiatry is intricate; psychiatrists typically collaborate closely with other healthcare professionals, such as primary care providers (PCPs), psychologists, and nurses. Furthermore, they collaborate with community-based organizations in providing culturally appropriate mental and wellness services; using strengths-based models, this approach connects underrepresented or impoverished communities with mental health resources that meet their needs.

Psychiatrists employ physical examinations and interviews with their patients to diagnose mental illness while using the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders published by the American Psychiatric Association as a reference point. Furthermore, psychiatrists may conduct blood or urine tests to establish whether their condition is psychological or caused by medical factors.

Psychiatrists are also qualified to prescribe medication. They have an in-depth knowledge of medicine and an excellent grasp of biology, psychology, and neuroscience – this allows them to identify which drugs will provide maximum help to patients while making adjustments when necessary. Doing this requires extensive medical experience and an appreciation of social, cultural, and environmental influences that impact mental illness; additionally, they must communicate their recommendations effectively to other care team members.

Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP)

Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) provides health coverage to families whose income falls between qualifying for Medicaid and affording private health insurance policies. States can choose whether or not to administer CHIP as a separate program or incorporate it with their state’s Medicaid program – most states opt for the latter approach, with 27 different state CHIP programs contracting with 154 MCOs as of January 2023, making it hard to identify how many of their CHIP enrollment comprises children from both programs from public sources alone.

State policies that utilize express lane eligibility or presumptive eligibility help streamline the eligibility determination process for Medicaid or CHIP. Such policies use information from public benefits programs like the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, school lunch, or Temporary Assistance to Needy Families to determine preliminary eligibility.

Policymakers hope these policies can simplify enrollment while improving care quality for eligible children. Some states have eliminated premiums in CHIP, while others require monthly premiums no more significant than five percent of family income. Cost-sharing policies for CHIP may be implemented, subject to federal guidelines; cost-sharing policies for Medicaid should not depress enrollment rates.

The Healthy Children and Access to Services Acts extend funding for CHIP until the federal fiscal year 2027. In particular, the ACCESS Act includes provisions designed to strengthen CHIP’s operation – such as its maintenance of effort requirement that will ensure states maintain eligibility standards established from 2010 until 2027.

STAR Programs

The STAR Programs are Medicaid-managed-care plans that offer members primary doctors and specialists such as psychiatrists. It also provides health insurance, support services for seniors and adults with disabilities, and long-term care services; its network comprises more than 9,000 physicians and 70 hospitals throughout Texas.

Community Health Choice, an independent non-profit organization with over two decades of experience working in healthcare, focuses on making affordable care accessible to low-income residents through its extensive network of providers and accreditation from URAC. Furthermore, this organization offers training in nursing, electrocardiogram technology, phlebotomy, and CareerReady, which assists students in finding employment within the healthcare industry.

In addition to its health insurance marketplace, STAR also provides social services. These include childbirth classes, neighborhood meeting spots, transportation assistance, affordable memberships to local clubs and organizations, scholarships for students seeking professional certification in health care, affordable memberships of clubs and organizations, and scholarship funding for students seeking professional certification in health care.

Individuals interested in becoming STAR providers should visit the Community Health Choice website and click “For Providers,” entering their tax number before filling out and submitting an application for consideration. Once that process has been completed, a Community Health Choice provider portal will appear.

STAR Court is a collaborative initiative between the Office of Pretrial Services, Probation Office/Northern District of Ohio, and community resource providers that employs an incentive and treatment approach to reintegrate offenders into society successfully and saves public resources money through this cost-effective alternative to federal supervision.

Health Insurance Marketplace

The Health Insurance Marketplace is integral to the Affordable Care Act (ACA, or Obamacare). It enables individuals and small businesses to easily compare and select a health plan that best meets their needs while also seeing if they qualify for financial assistance. Furthermore, under ACA regulations, all exchange plans must cover all ten essential health benefits without applying medical underwriting or excluding coverage for preexisting conditions – while also prohibiting large employers from enrolling their employees into these exchanges to leverage their negotiating power to lower health insurance costs for all their employees.

Additionally, the Marketplace provides personalized assistance for consumers who require it in the form of “Navigators.” These trained professionals assist consumers with filling out applications for the Marketplace and qualifying for insurance affordability programs, conducting outreach/education, and referring consumers to health insurance ombudsmen/consumer assistance programs.

Individuals can access coverage in the Marketplace during open enrollment, which runs from November 1 to January 15. Some states also have state-based marketplaces (SBM) open during this period. However, most consumers can only enroll during special enrollment periods when something qualifies as a life event, such as losing employer coverage or receiving notice of such loss.

Community plans feature robust provider networks and telehealth services that allow members to connect with board-certified doctors via phone or video call and get prescriptions online for free. Members should use community-approved telehealth providers to maximize the value of premium dollars spent.

Affordable

Community Health Choice (CHC), founded two decades ago, strives to make health care more affordable for families and individuals in Southeast Texas by offering primary, multi-specialty, preventive, and patient-centric care in an atmosphere explicitly tailored for patients. A network of over 600 providers and programs makes this possible, offering dental and specialty care at discounted rates and home and community-based long-term support. Community First Choice Option services were made available under the Affordable Care Act and phased in over three years across five geographic zones across the state. Community Health Choice coordinates its members’ Medicare coverage.