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Health Coverage Enrollment

Building on the success of CHEER’s outreach to the Latino and African immigrant communities as an outreach entity for the Affordable Care Act, CHEER became an Application Counselor Sponsoring Entity through the Maryland Health Benefits Exchange.  Three community outreach specialists completed training as application counselors to enroll people in Qualified Health Plans or Medicaid through the Maryland Health Benefits Exchange.

This work has made a significant impact in reducing the number of uninsured and expanding access to healthcare to community members who had no health care access previously.  In the last ACA open season CHEER helped more than 1500 households get information about health coverage and has enrolled 391 people in health care coverage during the six months between November 2016 and April 2017.

CHEER helps community members navigate the health insurance system and enroll, using Maryland Health Connection, in the most convenient individual or family plan through our Application Counselor team.

CHEER application counselors are available on a walk-in basis during the following hours:

  • Monday 9am-12pm

  • Wednesday 9am-12pm

  • Wednesday 6pm-8pm

  • Saturday 10am-12pm (Only November 1 to December 15)



Open Enrollment for 2018 health plans starts November 1, 2017.


Important dates:

  • November 1, 2017: Open Enrollment starts — first day you can enroll, re-enroll, or change a 2018 insurance plan through the Health Insurance Marketplace. Coverage can start as soon as January 1, 2018.

  • December 15, 2017: Last day to enroll in or change plans for coverage to start January 1, 2018.

How to Access Health Insurance

    1. Documents needed to app:

● Birthdates- birth certificate for minors, ID for adults

● Social Security Number (or document number for legal immigrants)

● Citizenship or immigration status - Green Card, INS letter stating refugee or asylee status, Employment Authorization, or naturalization certificate with alien number (no passport) 

● Tax Returns for previous years

● W-2 form or paytubs

● Policy numbers for any current health insurance and information about employer-sponsored coverage you or someone in your household is eligible for (for example, if a parent comes in wanting to enroll their kid in Medicaid, but the parent has health insurance)

● Email, user ID, password if you have applied to Maryland Health Connection previously

    2. People who qualify for MEDICAID:

● Green Card holders or Permanent residents (for 5 years and 6 months)

● Asylees or refugee status

● Children (under 18)

    3. Enrollment Period:

● The open enrollment period for 2016 is closed. The new period begins November 1, 2016. Right now, it is possible to enroll in case of special circumstances:


Marriage, divorce, having a child or adopting a child, lose health insurance, move to or from Maryland or have certain changes in residency inside of the state, change in your disability status, gain or lose a dependent, not being eligible for Medicaid, changes in citizenship or immigration status, imprisonment or returning from prison, change in status as a Native American/Alaskan native, other changes or mistakes on a case by case basis social security number


Report any changes that can affect eligibility such as name changes, birth date, or change in social security number

    4. Requirements for Medicaid coverage:

● Medicaid requirements: Green card for 5 years and 6 months AND meet income criteria

● Medicaid covers dental, but only limited preventive care- it shows you what you can get when you get your letter from Medicaid

● When you enroll you will be shown different options for plans and they will show which plans are more likely to have doctors in certain geographical areas

● Some ACA plans include dental insurance but most you need to apply separately for dental coverage. You can sign up for dental insurance through Maryland Health Connection.



Request an Appointment

To set an appointment, please fill out all spaces below along with what you are requesting and all available times you can meet with one our of specialists. We will contact you as soon as possible to make an appointment.

Further Questions?

If you have any other questions about this program, please contact Bruce Baker at

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