Florida CHAIN

Florida CHAIN is a statewide consumer health advocacy organization dedicated to improving the health of all Floridians by promoting access to affordable, quality health care. Florida CHAIN provides resources to build the capacities for and linking consumer, community and service organizations with health care advocacy. In addition, Florida CHAIN provides policy education, collaborative networking, training, and communications and organizing tools to the public, allied partners, media and policy makers. See below for more information about Florida CHAIN’s recent activities, accomplishments, and advocacy work and tools!

  • Florida CHAIN Released ACA Materials to Spread Education and Support

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    Following the Supreme Court oral arguments on the ACA in March, Florida CHAIN called advocates to action by providing materials to spread ACA education and support, highlighting the importance of advocacy between the conclusion of the hearings and the Court's anticipated decision this Summer. The materials include (1) real stories of Florida residents affected by the ACA; (2) examples and tips on writing letters to the editor; and (3) videos of ACA related stories that can be shared on YouTube.
  • Florida CHAIN Published Fact Sheet on Exchange Benefits and ACA Consumer Protections

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    • Florida CHAIN published a fact sheet highlighting benefits of the Exchange and the ACA's consumer protections for Florida residents. In addition, Florida CHAIN commented in various news sources regarding the state’s proposed Medicaid cuts and the ACA arguments before the Supreme Court: (1) Laura Goodhue, Executive Director of Florida CHAIN, was interviewed by NPR and The Palm Beach Post regarding Florida’s proposed Medicaid cuts; and (2) Florida CHAIN’s efforts to publicize stories of Floridians benefiting from the law were highlighted here.
  • Florida CHAIN Video Highlighted ACA's Benefits for Small Businesses

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    Florida CHAIN released a video highlighting the benefits of the Affordable Care Act’s small business tax credit to provide coverage for employees. The video features a small business owner in central Florida who received a tax credit of $13,000 over the past two years. The video has reached over 10,070 Twitter followers and the small business owner was featured in a letter to the editor published in The Tampa Bay Times.
  • Florida CHAIN Blogged about Missed Opportunities to Advocate for ACA Implementation

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    Florida CHAIN published a blog post on the Florida’s Office of Insurance Regulation's (OIR) missed opportunities to advocate for ACA implementation and support consumers. The OIR: (1) sought relief from the Medical Loss Ratio (MLR) requirement, advocating against consumers' interests and in support of health plans; (2) passed a last minute bill weakening protections for consumers who are denied treatment or services; and (3) established itself as an "effective rate review program," removing the federal requirement for review of premium rate increases of more than 10%.
  • Florida CHAIN Leader's Personal Story Featured in HHS Video

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    Vanessa Mishkit, a nurse and a Florida CHAIN trained leader, was featured on an HHS video highlighting how her son with expensive pre-existing conditions will benefit from the ACA.
  • Florida CHAIN Hosted Webinar on the ACA's Impacts on Women-Owned Small Businesses

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    Florida CHAIN held a webinar on how the ACA will impact women-owned small businesses in Florida. Discussion topics included: (1) small business tax credit eligibility; (2)the Florida Health Insurance Exchange; (3) prevention and wellness; (4) shared responsibility; (5) cost containment; and (6) additional ACA tools and resources available for small businesses.
  • Florida CHAIN Published Stories of Individuals Benefiting from ACA

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    Florida CHAIN submitted op-eds and Letters to the Editors to various newspapers; published profiles of individuals benefiting from the ACA through press releases and media pitches; announced anniversary events and news on Facebook and Twitter; and partnered with local organizations and communities in organizing meetings and webinars.
  • Florida CHAIN Released Summary of Legislation Related to Health Coverage and Safety Net

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    Florida CHAIN released a 2012 legislative session table that summarized the final status of legislation related to health coverage and the health care safety net as of the end of the regular session. The table takes a “good vs. bad” approach listing passed and not passed bills in a number of categories: (1) health care services; (2) payments to health providers (directly affecting access to care); (3) eligibility for coverage; (4) Medicaid managed care; (5) ACA implementation; and (6) private health coverage.  "Good" proposals that passed included: (1) expanding KidCare eligibility to children of low-income state workers; (2) defining  a medical loss ratio (MLR) in Medicaid managed care that is consistent with the ACA; and (3) developing a process for creating a “no wrong door” coordinated eligibility and enrollment system linking Medicaid, KidCare, and any future Exchange. 
  • Florida CHAIN Published Fact Sheet on Benefits of Exchange and ACA Consumer Protections

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    Florida CHAIN published a fact sheet highlighting benefits of the Exchange and the ACA's consumer protections for Florida residents. In addition, Florida CHAIN was also interviewed in an NPR article regarding Florida's proposed Medicaid cuts and highlighted in an article on the organization's efforts to publicize stories for state residents benefiting from the law.
  • Florida CHAIN and Power U Hosted ACA Town Hall on Women's Health Issues

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    Florida CHAIN, in collaboration with Power U, is set to host an ACA Town Hall Meeting on women’s health issues on March 22nd.
  • Florida CHAIN Published Story on Negative Effects of Proposed Medicaid Premiums

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    Florida CHAIN, working in conjunction with the grassroots, Miami-based advocacy group Power U, identified the story of a woman who would be forced to un-enroll her family in Medicaid should the federal government grant state lawmakers’ request to charge premiums to all beneficiaries, including those below the poverty line.
  • Florida CHAIN Released Legislative Status Grid on Health-Related Bills

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    With the end of Florida's 2012 legislative session in sight, Florida CHAIN released a legislative status grid providing a detailed list of selected health-related bills by issue, noting that there still important health care and kids' coverage issues to be addressed. The grid includes comments on where the Governor, House and Senate stand on each provision. Each bill is categorized as either “bad” or “good.” Examples of “bad” bills are cuts to Medicaid provider reimbursement rates and eliminating Medicaid eligibility for 21 and 22 year-old former foster care youth. “Good” bills include extending KidCare, Florida’s Children’s Health Insurance Program, eligibility to children of state employees and legal immigrant children as well as earmarking additional funding for the Early Steps program.  The 2012 legislative session ends March 9th.
  • Florida CHAIN Blogged About Governor Scott's Proposal to Cut Medicaid Budget

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    Florida CHAIN published a blog entry on Governor Scott’s proposal to cut nearly $2 billion from the Medicaid budget. The post notes that the hospitals anchoring the health care safety net would bare the brunt of those cuts, undermining access to care for the poorest as well as the integrity of the Medicaid system as a whole.
  • Florida CHAIN Published 2012 State Legislative Agenda

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    Florida CHAIN published its 2012 State legislative agenda, outlining five areas of focus for the upcoming session. According to the release, the legislature should:

    • Preserve and strengthen the already strained State health care safety net;
    • Protect Medicaid recipients from risky managed care experiments that place the interests of Medicaid HMOs and their investors/shareholders above those of patients and taxpayers;
    • Rightfully acknowledge the ACA as the law of the land;
    • Take additional steps to protect and improve access to care for children; and
    • Ensure that the State’s finance and taxation system provides revenue sufficient to meet the basic needs of Florida and Floridians.
  • Florida CHAIN Issued Statement Supporting ACA

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    In response to the Florida Attorney General’s filing in the case of Florida vs. HHS, Florida CHAIN issued a statement in support of the law. The statement notes the importance of the ACA in helping secure health insurance for the approximately 4 million residents currently lacking any type of coverage.
  • Florida CHAIN Sent Letter to CMS in Opposition of Medical Loss Ratio Waiver

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    Florida CHAIN sent a letter to CMS opposing the State’s appeal to federal lawmakers with respect to the recent denial Florida’s MLR Waiver Request. The letter notes that Florida officials claim that the requirement will hurt the state’s insurance market, despite evidence that many of the largest insurers already meet the MLR requirement and are not exiting the market. On January 19, HHS officially rejected the State’s appeal.

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