Low income North Dakotans have another option to apply for health care coverage through the expanded Medicaid program.
Until now, they could apply on-line or in-person. The new option: by phone.
"We actually have contracted with a vendor (Automated Health Systems), who will take applications over the phone, if they would prefer to make an application that way, rather than in person or on-line," said North Dakota Human Services Director Maggie Anderson. She says people have already been applying via computer or paper.
"We currently have about 1400 applications," said Anderson. "We will begin to process those early next week (Dec. 9), and letting people know whether they are eligible for Medicaid, or if they're not, to direct them to the federal marketplace, so they can look at options."
Anderson says it’s estimated that around 20,000 North Dakotans could be eligible for expanded Medicaid. The coverage through that program becomes available January first.