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Local News

February 28, 2014

Children's health plan praised by area parents


Services that are normally covered include well-child care, physical exams, immunizations, x-rays and lab tests, outpatient surgery, emergency care, prescription and non-prescription drugs, inpatient hospital care, short-term therapeutic outpatient services such as chemotherapy, dental care, vision care, speech and hearing and Hospice, according to the website.

Bueck, a bank teller in Oneonta, said her children have been enrolled in Child Health Plus since they were each one-year-old. Jack, 6, and Alexa, 2, are covered through Excellus, a health insurance company that is part of the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association. In Otsego County, Excellus BCBS is the top provider for people enrolled in Child Health Plus, followed by Fidelis and Capital District Physicians Health Plan, or CDPHP.

Bueck said Jack and Alexa see a pediatrician at UHS Primary Care on River Street where, she said, the doctors spend a great deal of time making sure the patients are well taken care of. She said she pays $18 a month to cover both children.

“It’s a good resource,” Bueck said, “and good coverage. It would be awfully expensive if I had to pay under my insurance. This is much more affordable.”

In order to apply for Child Health Plus, parents can either visit the New York State of Health Marketplace online, or visit a certified application counselor at one of the community-based Health Navigator sites.

Mothers & Babies Perinatal Network of South Central New York, Inc. is one Navigator site where families can enroll. It serves Otsego, Delaware, Broome and Chemung counties.

Theresa Kaschak, director of health insurance programs at Mothers & Babies Perinatal Network of SCNY and a certified Navigator for the Department of Health and Marketplace, said there is no income limit for Child Health Plus. The state provides subsidies for families with incomes up to 400 percent of the poverty level which, for a family of four, would be roughly $94,000, she said.

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