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Rhode Island's Health Insurance Consumer Support Line

"We're here to assist you."

Call toll-free 1-(855)-747-3224 

Frequently Asked Questions

I received a notice from my insurance company regarding a new database that will collect my health information.  What does this mean and is my information anonymous? 

If you received a notice from your health insurance plan to Opt-Out of of the new All Payer Claims Database (APCD) and want more information, please click here.  The purpose of this anonymous database is to provide actionable data to support the study and comparison of healthcare utilization, cost, and trends; to identify opportunities for improvement in healthcare quality in Rhode Island; and, to inform consumers. 

The information collected in the APCD is completely anonymous and complies with the highest industry standards for privacy and security (including HIPAA).  The APCD will never collect any information that can link you to your medical information and health insurance claims.  In fact, when submitting claims information to the RI-APCD, insurance companies remove ALL information that that could possibly indentify an individual and their dependants.  This includes name, SSN, insurance policy number, address, and date of birth. 

The data in the RI-APCD will be "de-identified", meaning that names, address, and other personal information will be removed so that information in the database cannot be linked to particular people. All information collected will be anonymous and security will be very tight. If you do not wish to be a part of the APCD, please click here: Opt-Out  or call us at RIREACH - 1-(855)-747-3224. 

To find out more about how the database works, please click here. 

What is RIREACH?rhode island state house

RIREACH, or the R.I. Insurance Resource, Education, and Assistance Consumer Helpline helps consumers get what they need from their health insurance coverage by walking consumers through the process.   As a program of RIPIN, RIREACH draws upon the same peer-to-peer support model that RIPIN (The Rhode Island Parent Information Network) has successfully used for over 21 years. We are all consumers too. Please read our About Us page to find out more.

How does RIREACH help consumers?

RIREACH helps by answering consumer inquiries on health care options, supporting Rhode Islanders through changes in the Affordable Care Act, and provides direct support in navigating the commercial coverage system. Call one of our knowledgeable and courteous Consumer Resource Specialists with your questions, we are happy to help. 

RIREACH can:

  • Help you understand the health coverage options available to you
  • Help you access and find out what your coverage covers
  • Help you with other sources of assistance
  • Inform you about your rights and responsibilities as a consumer
  • Assist in solving problems with your coverage
  • Help you in English or Spanish and offer interpretation services in other languages.

RIREACH does not:

  • Provide quotes or sell insurance
  • Enroll consumers in commercial insurance plans, Medicaid, or Medicare
  • Offer financial assistance or aid
  • Share your personal information or story without your permission
  • Turn anyone away, we will help you contact the person that can support you if it is not us

Inquiries RIREACH can answer:

  • How and where can I get affordable health coverage?
  • What are my options for insurance if I am unemployed or underemployed?
  • Can an insurance company deny my child or me coverage because of a preexisting condition?
  • How do I choose an insurance plan that works for me?
  • My health insurance company denied me the health services I need. What are my options now?
  • Where can I find low-cost dental care in Rhode Island?
  • I cannot afford my health insurance. What are my options?

 

What is the Affordable Care Act?

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA or just ACA) is a healthcare reform law signed by President Barack Obama on March 23, 2010 that aims to improve the American health system by increasing health coverage access for Americans and by providing new protections for people who have health insurance.

What is the Rhode Island Health Benefits Exchange and how do I know if I qualify for it?

The Rhode Island Health Benefits Exchange (RIHBE) is better known as HealthSourceRI and it operates as the health insurance marketplace for individuals and small businesses to buy affordable and qualified health benefit plans. HealthSourceRI is a new, transparent, and competitive insurance marketplace that has been open since October 1st 2013.

If your employer does not offer a health insurance plan, or if your plan premiums are unaffordable, you may be eligible to participate in the Exchange. Please call our RIREACH hotline at 1-855-747-3224 to learn more.

I already have private health insurance, what can RIREACH do for me?

If you have affordable commercial coverage that works for you, but are having difficulties accessing your coverage or having the services you need covered, call RIREACH for support. If you are unsure whether your coverage is affordable or if you have having difficulty paying your premiums, you may have other options. 1-(855)-RIREACH can help!

I recently lost my job and was offered coverage through something called COBRA, but I don’t understand what it is or how it works. Can RIREACH help me?

We sure can! In 1986 Congress passed the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (COBRA). COBRA amends various acts so employers are required by law to provide a continuation of health coverage that might otherwise have ended with the employment. If you leave your job for any reason, your former employer must offer you the same health insurance coverage you received when working. COBRA does not grant consumers the same coverage rates as the employer- consumers are charged with the full premium amount. RIREACH can help discuss your options, but you can also learn more about COBRA by clicking here.

Our children graduated from college and moved out of our home, will they lose coverage?

The new provisions of the ACA allow for young adults through age 26 to stay enrolled under their parent’s health coverage plan even if they:

  • Are married
  • Live on their own
  • Are enrolled at a college or university
  • Are not financially dependent on you
  • Are eligible to obtain employer sponsored insurance coverage

How do I know if I qualify for RI Medical Assistance (Medicaid)?

RI’s Medicaid managed care program is more commonly known as RITE Care and it generally covers uninsured pregnant women, children and parents, and seniors based on certain eligibility criteria. RITE Share is a health insurance premium assistance plan that makes employer sponsored health insurance more affordable to families by paying some or all of the employee’s health insurance costs.

In order to be eligible for RITE Care or RITE Share, your household income must be at or below certain guidelines. You can learn more about RITE Care by clicking here.

After applying, if you do not qualify for RITE Care, you will be notified automatically if you qualify for RITE Share. If you don’t qualify for either program, you may still be eligible for other health insurance plans at a reduced cost through the RI Health Benefits Exchange.

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