For Immediate Release
February 16, 2023
HONOLULU – Throughout the pandemic, all Medicaid members received continuous uninterrupted coverage amid the public health emergency. Med-QUEST Division (MQD) under the Department of Human Services, will begin reaching out to members in March to let them know what month their eligibility will be redetermined. This eligibility renewal work will begin in April and be spread out across 12 months.
MQD wants to assure people that their Medicaid coverage will remain active until their case is up for renewal. We anticipate that most current members will continue to be eligible for coverage, but for those who may no longer be eligible, our MQD staff will help connect them with affordable coverage on the HealthCare.Gov Marketplace. Or, if Medicaid coverage is no longer needed, please contact us and let us know.
Members will receive a pink letter that contains eligibility renewal information one month prior to their month of renewal. This means that renewal notices will go out as early as April 2023 (for May 2023 renewals) and as late as March 2024 (for April 2024 renewals).
Please note that this notification process will happen over a one-year period. This means that not all Members will receive their pink letters at the same time. A plain white letter will be sent in March to every Med-QUEST household letting them know the month of their scheduled redetermination. The redetermination months will range from May 2023 to April 2024.
In preparation for this renewal period, Med-QUEST asks members to do the following:
- Be sure to update your contact information by logging into your account on Medical.mybenefits.hawaii.gov or by calling the Health Plan number on the back of your insurance card.
- If you no longer need QUEST (Medicaid) coverage, call us at 1-800-316-8005, (TTY/TDD 711) to let us know.
- Starting in April, be on the lookout for a pink envelope with a pink letter that will provide instructions on eligibility renewals. This pink letter may require a response in order to maintain health coverage. Be sure to read the letter and follow all instructions, if applicable.
- If you need coverage but no longer qualify for Med-QUEST, please check with your employer to see if you are eligible for health insurance coverage.
- If you are not eligible for health insurance through your employer, please visit the Health Insurance Marketplace at HealthCare.Gov or by calling 1-800-318-2596 to make sure you stay well and stay covered!
“We emphasize to members that it is very important to update their contact information with their health plan and encourage them to respond to all Med-QUEST/Medicaid communication in a timely manner to ensure continuous coverage,” said Judy Mohr Peterson, Medicaid Director, and Med-QUEST Administrator.
Before mailing a renewal notice, Med-QUEST first seeks to renew its members eligibility using available and approved data. Only if MQD cannot renew a member’s coverage using these data sources, will the member be asked to provide additional information listed within the pink letter. For those members whose cases MQD can renew without needing additional information, the pink notice will contain a confirmation of renewed coverage and no further action will be needed at that time.
To access the Frequently Asked Questions document, click here.
Public Information Officer
Department of Human Services
About Med-QUEST/Medicaid: The Department of Human Services is the state agency designated to administer Medicaid, a program jointly funded by federal-state funds that provides health care coverage and other benefits to eligible individuals. These include children, pregnant women, parents of eligible children, adults, children in foster care and young adults previously in foster care, aged, blind or disabled, and those in nursing homes.
COVID-19 Impacts: Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, there have been more than 138 thousand new enrollees who receive Medicaid coverage, a 42% increase since March 6, 2020. With total enrollment now at more than 465,000, Medicaid covers 1/3 of Hawaii residents and includes more than half of Hawaii’s keiki. Enrollment is at a historic high due in part to the continuous coverage provisions allowed during the public health emergency. During this public health emergency, no one was disenrolled unless the member moved out-of-state, requested that their coverage be terminated, or the member died.