Undocumented residents can use OmniSalud to secure health insurance | AspenTimes.com

Undocumented residents can use OmniSalud to secure health insurance

SilverEnhanced Savings sold out. However, there are still options.

OmniSalud is a program when undocumented citizens can get health insurance without the federal government being notified of their citizenship status.
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Connect for Health Colorado rolled out a new insurance program called OmniSalud, which expands health-insurance options to undocumented individuals. With this, Coloradans can access health insurance regardless of their documentation status more privately than before.

OmniSalud is a subsidiary of Connect for Health Colorado, a state-sanctioned insurance marketplace. Or, in other words, a place to shop around for insurance options online.

However, OmniSalud is offered on a separate server that does not ask about documentation status and, therefore, does not share any personal information with the federal government.

According to OmniSalud site, the Department of Homeland Security “does not consider this type of health-insurance coverage and assistance when making public charge determinations.”

Those without legal citizenship were able to purchase health insurance through the state-run marketplace before OmniSalud, but some data could have been shared with the federal government, according to The Denver Post.

The state set aside $57.8 million to offer subsidized coverage to undocumented individuals through the SilverEnhanced 94% program, covering an estimated 10,000 people.

To be eligible for the program, one needed to make a yearly income 150% below the poverty line — $20,385 for an individual, or $34,545 for a family of three.

The OmniSalud SilverEnhanced Savings program sold out this week after reaching its funding limit. However, undocumented residents can still use the OmniSalud program to purchase insurance at a regular price.

Michael Sailor, founder of Michael Sailor Insurance in Aspen, has been on a mission to help those who are undocumented learn more about their insurance options.

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He hired Spanish translators to increase the accessibility of their services. In addition, he reached out to religious groups in the Aspen area to get information about OmniSalud out to as many people as possible.

“I really do feel obligated to think about this,” said Sailor. “When people show up at the hospital, sick or having a heart attack because they don’t have insurance. What could have been prevented if they had an annual exam? What could have been prevented if they could have just went to the doctor when they had a cold or flu, before it turned into pneumonia? “

The deadline to apply for that health insurance is Dec. 15. However, open enrollment ends Jan. 15.

According to Sailor, the instructions to apply are very simple and applications are offered in both English and Spanish.