Montana Health Centers Get Federal Funding - KULR-8 Television, Billings, MT

Montana Health Centers Get Federal Funding

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A Billings health center is receiving federal funding to help bring insurance to more people.

RiverStone Health, which will receive $161,000, is one of 17 centers across Montana to gain assistance courtesy of the Affordable Care Act. With the funding, health centers in the Treasure State expect to hire 27 workers and enroll more than 14,000 people in insurance programs.

RiverStone Health President and CEO John Felton says many of the people now eligible for health insurance, have previously never been covered.

"The real game changer is, though, that people who have resources to pay for health care have better access," he said. "They're more likely to go to the doctor, they're more likely to get preventive care, they're more likely to get immunized. If they do get ill, they're more likely to get timely treatment."

The funding is part of Health and Human Services federal plan to make applying for health coverage as easy as possible. Beginning October 1st, a revamped, consumer friendly website will help Montanans understand their options and enroll in the right program. There will also be a 24-hour-a-day consumer call center to assist people who will be enrolling in the new Health Insurance Marketplace.