Many community-based organizations serving individuals coming out of the criminal justice system recognize that their clients have physical, mental, and behavioral health needs, and that the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and Medicaid expansion have created new opportunities for their clients to access quality, affordable health care. However, they do not always know what those opportunities are or how to connect their clients to them.
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (ASPE) offers two issue briefs to assist such community-based organizations in connecting their clients to coverage and care. HIV/AIDS organizations serving recently incarcerated people living with HIV may find these resources helpful.
- Health Care Coverage for Reentering Men: What Difference Can It Make? This brief is intended for community-based organizations serving justice-involved men to help them better understand the new opportunities offered under the ACA, why it is important for their clients, and how they can help their clients get connected to coverage and care. Access the brief.
- The Importance of Medicaid Coverage for Criminal Justice Involved Individuals Reentering Their Communities. This brief highlights the importance of health insurance coverage for criminal justice-involved individuals, particularly the importance of the expansion in Medicaid coverage made available through ACA. It focuses on the characteristics of the justice-involved population, how they access care, and how they can benefit from Medicaid expansion to low-income adults. Access the brief.
The Ryan White Affordable Care Enrollment (ACE) Technical Assistance (TA) Center is also hosting the following webinar:
- Connecting Recently Incarcerated People Living with HIV to Health Coverage and Care - June 23, 2016, 3:00-4:15 PM ET. Join this webinar to learn about unique enrollment challenges facing this population, such as lack of awareness around coverage termination after release, unfamiliarity with the Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program service delivery system, and balancing the need for healthcare with other pressing needs like housing and employment. This webinar will provide concrete strategies to improve transition planning at the state, program, and client levels. Link to webinar registration.
For more resources on serving criminal justice-involved individuals at risk for or living with HIV, visit the AETC National Resource Center. Their resources include “Creating a Jail Linkage Program: Tools from the Integrating HIV Innovative Practices Program,” which shares lessons from a demonstration project that may be useful to both health care providers and community partners with an interest or need to work with incarcerated populations, particularly HIV-positive jail inmates and the recently released.