Guest Blog on TennCare

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Mark Brown, legislative coordinater at the state Department of Human Services, asked Pith if we would post the following about health care option fairs being held across the state. Here, we oblige:

GOVERNOR ANNOUNCES HEALTH CARE OPTIONS FAIRS

LOCAL HEALTH PROVIDERS COME TOGETHER TO SHARE RESOURCES AVAILABLE FOR UNINSURED

Nashville - As part of the ongoing process to strengthen the state's health care safety net, Governor Phil Bredesen today announced his administration is working with legislators, health care providers, and health care advocacy groups to organize a series of "Health Care Options Fairs" across the state.

The fairs are designed to provide information about the local health care options that are available to those who are losing TennCare coverage, those who are subject to TennCare benefit reductions, or to those 700,000 additional uninsured Tennesseans across the state. "As we continue to think about ways to strengthen our state's safety net for the Tennesseans losing TennCare coverage, we need to do all we can to educate them and the Tennesseans who are uninsured about the other health care options that are available in their communities," said Bredesen. "I've asked my administration and the members of the Tennessee General Assembly to work together to bring government agencies, insurance companies, local health and pharmaceutical providers and advocacy groups into one setting where they can provide information about the resources available to those who need them."

The Health Care Options Fairs are open to anyone subject to disenrollment from TennCare, those remaining on TennCare, and anyone who is currently uninsured in Tennessee. Attendees who have been disenrolled from TennCare are encouraged to bring any paperwork that they may have received from the Department of Human Services or from the TennCare Bureau to the fairs to ask questions about what other services may be provided to them through the Governor's expanded health care safety net program.

The Health Care Options Fairs currently scheduled are as follows:

Thursday, Sept. 1 * 6-8 PM
Glencliff High School
160 Antioch Pike
Nashville, TN

Tuesday, Sept. 6 * 4-6 PM
Giles County Courthouse
Town Square
Pulaski, TN

Thursday, Sept. 8 * 4-6 PM
Tennessee Technology Center
127 Industrial Drive
Ripley, TN

Monday, Sept. 12 * 5-8 PM
Howard School of Academics and Technology
2500 South Market Street
Chattanooga, TN

Tuesday, Sept. 13 * 4-6 PM
Union County High School
150 Main Street
Maynardville, TN

News about additional Health Care Options Fairs will be provided as those details are finalized.

For more information about programs and services such as prescription assistance programs, other insurance options and local medical services, call the Tennessee Health Options hotline at 1-888-486-9355. The hotline also can connect TennCare disenrollees to the Ask-A-Nurse service if they want to discuss a health or medical condition with a registered nurse. The hotline provides a list of healthcare resources in each county, including local health departments and nonprofit clinics that may provide free or low-cost services based on ability to pay. A corresponding Web address is also available: www.tnhealthoptions.org.

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