The Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts Foundation has funded the Connecting Consumers with Care grant program consistently since 2001. The program supports community health centers and community-based organizations in helping consumers enroll in and maintain publicly subsidized health insurance coverage. The program also encourages collaborative problem solving to minimize system-level barriers and enhanced education and empowerment of consumers so that they may navigate systems of health coverage and care with decreasing dependence on grantee organizations. During the October 2011 -- September 2013 grant cycle, the Foundation funded 13 organizations across Massachusetts. While this funding period preceded the first Affordable Care Act (ACA) open enrollment period, lessons from the outreach, enrollment, and post-enrollment work of these grantees remain invaluable to efforts to connect consumers with health coverage and care both in Massachusetts and across the country.
This report describes findings from the evaluation of the 2011 -- 2013 grant cycle. The aims of the evaluation were to 1) assess progress made across the grantee sites on select outreach and enrollment measures; 2) describe the practices grantees adopted to reach out to and enroll consumers in insurance, increase consumer self-sufficiency, and collaborate with other agencies to minimize barriers to care; and 3) characterize barriers experienced by grantees as they worked to meet the goals of the program.