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So far Health Connector has created 128 blog entries.

Celiac Disease Friendly Restaurants in Massachusetts

May is Celiac Disease Awareness Month. If you have the disease, or a gluten sensitivity, going out to eat can be a challenge. We looked at top choices from Find Me Gluten Free—a website dedicated to help people with gluten-sensitivity find safe restaurant choices—to share some top Massachusetts locations. Luckily, there are many restaurants all over Commonwealth that offer delicious, gluten-free and allergen-friendly options. Here are just a few options available: Sunset Grill and Pizza, Amherst, MA Looking for a quick bite out to eat with friends? Customers with Celiac Disease find it hard to find safe pizza option without a lot of research ahead of time, but Sunset Grill and Pizza makes it easy with its variety of gluten-free pizzas, sandwiches, and desserts. One customer even claimed that “eating here makes me feel like I don’t have Celiac!” Woodman’s of Essex, Essex, MA There are many good seafood options in New England, and Woodman’s in Essex offers a wide variety of options for all types of customers. Customers with gluten allergies can enjoy fried favorites like calamari and french-fries without worry, making the restaurant widely popular among customers with 96% of 60 voters rating it as Celiac-friendly and an average rating of 4.5 out of 5 stars among 65 reviewers. Milford Pizza Palace, Milford, MA If you think Celiac Disease means you are banned from pizza forever, think again. This Worcester County restaurant not only has an entire Gluten-Free menu, but the menu also lists every single ingredient [...]

Wednesday, May 8th, 2019|

Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce and Health Connector for Business Kickoff Small Business Week with Partnership to Better Empower Small Businesses to Access Affordable Health Insurance

BOSTON – May 6, 2019 – Working to empower small businesses to access affordable health insurance for employees, the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce (GBCC) kicks off National Small Business Week by announcing a new partnership with the Health Connector for Business that delivers cost-saving opportunities to employers and health care insurance choice to employees. Through the partnership, GBCC small-business members (employers with less than 50 employees) will be able to create and manage accounts online and have direct access to support through customer service. In addition, health insurance brokers who are GBCC members will be connected to those small-business members to maximize the benefits of the platform. “Small businesses make up more than half of our Greater Boston Chamber membership, and we know that the rising costs of doing business can seriously impact their ability to succeed and grow,” said James E. Rooney, president and CEO of the GBCC. “We’re thrilled to partner with Health Connector for Business on an initiative that provides our small businesses and their employees with more health insurance options at more affordable rates.” “We are excited to enter into this partnership with the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce and are committed to helping empower more small businesses access affordable health insurance,” said Louis Gutierrez, the Executive Director of the Massachusetts Health Connector. “Health Connector for Business can provide cost savings to small businesses, while delivering to employees unique choice opportunities they previously were unable to access.” Through the new partnership, Greater Boston Chamber of [...]

Monday, May 6th, 2019|Tags: |

Massachusetts Health Connector Selects Softheon to Modernize Billing and Payment Operations with Members, and Enrollment Data Transfer to Carriers

BOSTON – April 11, 2019 – Continuing to modernize and automate customer and carrier operations, the Massachusetts Health Connector Board of Directors today approved a five-year contract with Softheon, which will deliver new payment options for members while maintaining consistent enrollment information transfer to carriers. Starting in June 2020, members will be able to pay their monthly premiums by using a debit card, credit card or automated phone system fulfilling a long-time request from members for a wider variety of payment options. Softheon will also develop state-of-the-art billing and notice-delivery processes for the Health Connector. “Our goal as an agency is to deliver to our members high-quality, efficient customer service that supports a broader variety of consumer needs,” said Louis Gutierrez, the Executive Director of the Massachusetts Health Connector. “We are looking forward to the work with Softheon, so as to improve services for members and carriers.” “Softheon is truly honored to partner with the Health Connector in their mission to serve the citizens of Massachusetts,” said Eugene Sayan, Founder & CEO of Softheon. “As the health care industry embraces the digital transformation, we are committed to making health care affordable, accessible, and plentiful for all Americans.” The contract for Softheon includes configuring their systems and connecting them to existing operations by June 2020, and four years of running the Health Connector’s enrollment and billing operations. The five-year contract, which includes the creation of a new member portal, is valued at $60 million, along with potentially two, two-year extensions at [...]

Thursday, April 11th, 2019|Tags: |

ABCs of Health Insurance: Words to Know

Not really sure how a co-payment is different from co-insurance? Do you only “Kinda, sorta” understand deductibles? Health insurance has a language of its own and you want to be sure you’re choosing the right plan. Here, we’ll try to help you by explaining some of the most common terms you’ll see while you’re shopping for—and using—your insurance. Premium The amount you pay each month for your health insurance. You must pay your premium every month, whether or not you use health care services. The Health Connector will send you a bill for your premium each month. The premium will always be due by the 23rd of the month. Deductible The total amount you must pay in a plan year before your plan will pay for part or all of your services. Some services may not have a deductible. They may be free or just have a co-pay, even though you haven’t met the deductible yet. Co-pay A fixed price you pay when you get certain health care services. Not all services require a co-pay. Co-insurance If a health care service has co-insurance, you pay a percentage (part) of the cost for that service. Usually, you start to pay co-insurance after you meet your deductible. It is not a fixed cost like a co-pay. The amount you pay depends on the total cost of [...]

Wednesday, January 23rd, 2019|

Join the Massachusetts Health Connector for a “Day of Coverage” January 17, 2019

On Thursday, January 17, 2019, the Massachusetts Health Connector embarks on a one-day, multi-city tour that includes stops at six locations across the Commonwealth to remind Massachusetts residents there is still time to get 2019 health coverage before Open Enrollment ends January 23. On Thursday, January 17, 2019, the Massachusetts Health Connector holds its “Day of Coverage” featuring activities across the Commonwealth designed to help people #GetCovered and #StayCovered with health insurance for the new year.“Day of Coverage” activities will be held in Boston, Lawrence, Framingham, Worcester, Hyannis, and Vineyard Haven. Open Enrollment is happening now and runs through January 23, 2019. Massachusetts residents who want to enroll in coverage or switch plans to start February 1, must sign up through the Health Connector by January 23rd. Residents can sign up for coverage at www.MAhealthconnector.org, over the phone at 1-877-MA-ENROLL (1-877-623-6765), or in person through a local navigator organization. Here's where we'll be throughout the day on January 17th. We hope you'll join us or help spread the word by following the Health Connector on social media. Day of Coverage Locations & Times Boston Forest Hills MBTA Station, Jamaica Plain TIME: 7:00 a.m.–10:30 a.m. A Health Connector team will be at the Forest Hill MBTA station distributing information about Open Enrollment. Red Sox 2018 World Series trophy stop Join us between 8:30 and 9:30 a.m. to view the Commissioner's Trophy! Vineyard Haven Martha’s Vineyard Hospital TIME: 10:30 a.m.–12:30 p.m. A Health Connector team and Navigators will have an information table [...]

Thursday, January 17th, 2019|

3 Tips to Find the Right Health Care Provider

You’re in the market for a new primary care provider. Maybe you’re in college and you’ve aged out of the pediatrician you’ve been seeing since you were young. Maybe you’re moving to a new city. Or, maybe your current provider is retiring. Either way, finding a provider can be challenging. Here are some tips to help make your search easier. 1. Ask your friends and family Do you have any family members or friends who live in your area? After all, you’re looking for someone to take care of you and keep you healthy, so who better to ask than people you trust and care about you? While you can look reviews online—and this is a good option if you don’t know anyone in your local area—it is helpful to be able to ask questions about a person’s experiences with area providers. You can count on people you know to give you detailed answers to not only find providers, but help you make decisions. 2. Contact your health plan Some insurance plans may assign you to a provider. This is helpful when you don’t have time to search for a provider who not only takes your insurance, but is also taking new patients. However, you may also be assigned to a provider whose office is difficult to get to from your home or work. If you call your health plan, they may be able to give you a list of the providers in your area [...]

Wednesday, January 9th, 2019|

Thinking about visiting a walk-in center? Here are 3 things to know before you go.

The Health Connector walk-in centers are experiencing longer-than-normal wait times at all locations leading up to the December 23rd enrollment deadline for health and dental insurance that starts January 1st. The good news is that you have options to get application and enrollment help, make a payment, or send documents. 1. Have questions or need help applying or enrolling? For help by phone reporting changes, updating your eligibility, or choosing health or dental plans, you can call customer service at 1-877-623-6765 (TTY 1-877-623-7773 for people who are deaf, hard of hearing, or speech disabled.) Our call center is open 8 a.m. to 7 p.m., Monday through Friday. We are also open special hours Saturday, December 22 from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Go to the contact page for more information → 2. Making a payment? If you have a checking or savings account, you can make a payment online through our Payment Center. You can login to make your payment, or make a payment as a guest. Remember, your 2019 plan enrollment is not complete until you’ve made your January premium payment, so don’t wait! Go to our "How to Pay" page to see all of your options now → 3. Need to drop off proof? If you just completed or updated your application and asked to send proof when you received your eligibility results, you have up to 90 days to send your documents. What’s more is you don’t have to wait to send your [...]

Friday, December 21st, 2018|

Join the Massachusetts Health Connector for a “Day of Coverage” December 18, 2018

On Tuesday, December 18, 2018, the Massachusetts Health Connector is embarking on a one-day, multi-city tour that includes stops at seven locations across the Commonwealth to remind Massachusetts residents there is still time to get 2019 health coverage before Open Enrollment ends January 23. On Tuesday, December 18, 2018, the Massachusetts Health Connector will hold its “Day of Coverage” featuring activities across the Commonwealth designed to help people #GetCovered and #StayCovered with health insurance for the new year.“Day of Coverage” activities will be held in Boston, Cambridge, Chelsea, Fall River, Holyoke, New Bedford and Springfield, all communities with higher rates of uninsured residents than the population at large. Open Enrollment is happening now and runs through January 23, however, residents who want to start the new year with coverage must sign up through the Health Connector by Dec. 23. Residents can sign up for coverage at www.MAhealthconnector.org, over the phone at 1-877-MA-ENROLL (1-877-623-6765), or in person through a local navigator organization. Here's where we'll be throughout the day on December 18th. We hope you'll join us or help spread the word by following the Health Connector on social media. Day of Coverage Locations & Times Boston Ashmont MBTA Station, Dorchester TIME: 7:30 a.m. A team will be handing out coffee, donuts, and Health Connector information for morning commuters. Chelsea Chelsea Silver Line Station TIME: 7:30 a.m. A team will be handing out coffee, donuts, and Health Connector information for morning commuters. New Bedford Lydia's Bakery 1668 Achushnet Ave., New Bedford [...]

Tuesday, December 18th, 2018|

Massachusetts residents have until Dec. 23 to get covered and #StayCovered for Jan. 1, 2019, coverage

BOSTON – December 10, 2018 – Massachusetts residents who do not have health insurance or need to take action to #StayCovered have until Dec. 23 to enroll or renew coverage through the Massachusetts Health Connector, which holds Open Enrollment longer than the federal government. Open Enrollment in Massachusetts extends through Jan. 23 in Massachusetts, for those who obtain coverage starting in February 2019. Massachusetts residents can go to MAhealthconnector.org to apply and pick a plan. “Dec. 23 is an important deadline for people in Massachusetts who need to get covered or stay covered for the start of the New Year, and we want people to know they have an extra week compared to the federal deadline” said Louis Gutierrez, the Executive Director of the Massachusetts Health Connector. “We want everyone in Massachusetts to have access to affordable health care, and we want to extend every opportunity for residents to sign up or maintain their coverage.” As of Dec. 3, more than 261,000 were already enrolled for coverage starting Jan. 1, 2019. Members or applicants who need help finding coverage for next year can go to the Health Connector website and find a local organization with trained assisters who can help. Included are 16 Navigator organizations across the state, who have 94 individuals available to help, providing assistance in 15 languages. Along with reaching out to the state’s uninsured population through a series of community-based outreach and marketing efforts, the Health Connector is also encouraging people who already have insurance to [...]

Wednesday, December 12th, 2018|Tags: |

Massachusetts Health Connector Pre-Open Enrollment Tour Visits Worcester and Framingham

WORCESTER AND FRAMINGHAM—November 1, 2018—The Massachusetts Health Connector continues its three-week statewide Pre-Open Enrollment tour in Worcester and Framingham, connecting with residents and community leaders in advance of the first day of Open Enrollment. The Massachusetts Health Connector starts Open Enrollment on Nov. 1 with affordable, high-quality plans available to the state’s uninsured residents, and a #StayCovered campaign reminding everyone in the Commonwealth of the need to stay insured through the state’s individual mandate. Open Enrollment in Massachusetts runs Nov. 1, 2018, through Jan. 23, 2019, and is the time of year anyone without health insurance can sign up for coverage, and when Health Connector members can shop for the best plan for the New Year. The Health Connector will offer 57 plans from nine carriers. In addition to getting people who need coverage into plans for 2019, the Health Connector is also reminding people who already have health insurance that the state’s individual mandate remains in place. Residents who do not have health insurance that meets state standards may face a tax penalty if they do not #StayCovered. The Pre-Open Enrollment Tour will visit Worcester and Framingham, communities with a higher rate of uninsured residents than the population at large. Tour stops will include Health Connector outreach workers engaging local businesses, and local Navigator organizations. WHAT: Massachusetts Health Connector Pre-Open Enrollment Tour WHERE: Family Health Center of Worcester (Navigator) 11:00 a.m. Meet & Greet staff and Board of Navigator Address: 26 Queen Street, Worcester Agnes Rivera to cover Navigator [...]

Wednesday, October 31st, 2018|