By Michael Karpman
Cities are invited to apply for participation in one of two leadership academies focused on expanding access to health insurance coverage for children and families. These one-and-a-half-day trainings will help up to 20 city teams learn new ideas and approaches for increasing enrollment in Medicaid and the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP). Click here to download the leadership academy application. Please notify Dawn Schluckebier (firstname.lastname@example.org) if your city intends to apply.
Of these 20 local teams, NLC will competitively select 8-10 cities to receive more intensive assistance and up to $30,000 each in pass-through grants to develop strategic business plans for connecting more children to coverage. Based on these plans, up to six cities will be selected to receive further assistance and implementation grants of up to $260,000 per city over two years.
The Cities Expanding Access to Health Care for Children and Families leadership academies and technical assistance project are sponsored by NLC's Institute for Youth, Education and Families as part of a three-year, $3.25 million initiative funded by The Atlantic Philanthropies through its national KidsWell Initiative. The project was announced in the January 28, 2013, edition of the Weekly; click here for details.
NLC will host one leadership academy in late July for 10 teams from the Western half of the country, while the other leadership academy will be held in mid-September for 10 teams from the Eastern half of the country. Locations will be announced in the coming weeks. NLC will cover travel costs for three participants from each selected city. Applications are due no later than April 22, and NLC will announce selected cities by May 20.
The leadership academies will provide participants with the opportunity to learn effective outreach and enrollment strategies from national experts and from other cities that have taken steps to increase children's access to health insurance. Given the importance of cross-sector partnerships in conducting outreach and boosting program enrollment, applying cities are encouraged to form three-person teams of local elected officials, senior municipal staff, and other key stakeholders, including but not limited to county health departments, other health care providers and social service agencies, schools, United Ways, businesses, community organizations, and health advocacy groups, to attend the leadership academies.
NLC will select cities through a competitive process. Selection criteria will include evidence of high-level municipal leadership and commitment to increasing the number of children enrolled in health insurance programs, collaboration among city and community agencies, and a clear indication on how the leadership academy can bolster local efforts and help applicants overcome identified challenges. Preference will be given to NLC member cities.
Grants and Assistance
Only those cities that participate in a leadership academy will be eligible to apply for further technical assistance and pass-through grants. Through a competitive process, NLC will select and assist 8-10 cities in developing results-based plans for increasing participation in Medicaid and CHIP among eligible, uninsured children and families. A subset of these cities will be selected for the project's implementation phase, which will include cross-site meetings of city teams, public campaign launch events, and ongoing site-level assistance.
Cities and Health Insurance Coverage
Lack of health insurance coverage is associated with reduced access to preventive care, poor health outcomes, reduced school attendance and achievement among students, and greater risk that a costly illness will place uninsured families in financial crisis. Because cities often play important roles within the health care system, they shoulder some of the cost burden of uncompensated care for uninsured residents.
In recent years, many cities have partnered with other stakeholders to launch broad-based outreach campaigns in an effort to connect children and families with public health insurance programs and other vital federal and state benefits. These campaigns raise awareness and assist families with complex application processes. The leadership academies will highlight best practices and facilitate peer learning among participating city officials seeking to ensure that all children and families in their communities have access to health insurance.
Details: Click here to download the leadership academy application. Please notify Dawn Schluckebier (email@example.com) if your city intends to apply. For more information on the Cities Expanding Access to Health Care for Children and Families leadership academies and technical assistance project, contact Heidi Goldberg at (202) 626-3069 or firstname.lastname@example.org.