SOUTHERN TIER, N.Y. (WENY) --  With the end of the COVID-19 public health emergency, about nine million people in New York, including nearly 30,000 Guthrie patients, are going to have to renew their health insurance for the first time in three years or risk going uninsured. Officials from Guthrie Clinic and Fidelis Care have partnered together to remind patients and members in the Southern Tier to prepare for the change. 

"As the COVID national emergency is winding down it's important to remember that the programs such as Medicaid will shift back to the way it was before the pandemic. That means re-enrollment is critically important," said Dr. Edmund Sabenegh, Guthrie president and CEO. 

The change is set to impact millions of New Yorkers with Medicaid, Child Health Plus, Essential Plan, and Managed Long Term Care coverage. 

"This is a major change folks hadn't needed to do anything to keep their coverage in more than three years... but these rules apply to everybody to people need to understand when you get notice you have to supply information and take action. not taking action, you are risking losing your health insurance," said Megan Woodward, Fidelis Care vice president of Member Retention.

Lucia Saggiomo, VP, Corporate Revenue Cycle at Guthrie, said that in the event patients no longer qualify for Medicaid coverage counselors are ready to assist with finding new coverage sources. Anyone uninsured can also get assistance in applying for Guthrie's financial assistance program or in enrolling State Medicaid programs.

"Please, and I cannot emphasize this enough. Do not hesitate to reach out to Guthrie for guidance and support," said Saggiomo. 

For more information please visit the Fidelis Care website or call 866-435-9521, Monday-Friday 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.