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Consumer Assistance Grants Just Announced!

The federal government is now accepting applications for health reform’s Consumer Assistance Grants. The grants will provide nearly $30 million to help states educate consumers about their health coverage options and ensure access to accurate information about health reform.

All States and territories may apply for these grants to expand consumer assistance efforts such as:
· Helping consumers enroll in health coverage;
· Helping consumers file complaints and appeals against health plans;
· Educating consumers about their rights and empowering them to take action;
· Tracking consumer complaints to help identify problems and strengthen enforcement; and
· Establishing a health insurance consumer assistance (or ombudsman) program through the state’s insurance department, attorney general, or independent consumer assistance agency.

Eligible applicants include state insurance departments, attorneys general offices, independent consumer assistance agencies, and other state agencies. States and territories may also partner with non-profit organizations that have a track record of working with consumers.

Grant applications are available now! Go to the federal government’s grant website and search for CFDA # 93.519.

In the application, states must explain how the program will assist people with all types of coverage, collect data about any problems and questions, and provide assistance in a culturally appropriate manner.

Applications are due September 10, 2010.