What is the Public Health Emergency?
At the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, the federal government declared a public health emergency (PHE). Congress passed legislation that ensured anyone enrolled in Health First Colorado (Colorado’s Medicaid Program) was guaranteed to keep their health coverage even if they had household or income changes during the PHE. This is known as the "continuous coverage requirement."
Congress has recently passed a bill that ends the continuous coverage requirement on April 1, 2023.
This will allow states to begin normal renewal processes. Colorado will take 12 months (14 months including noticing) to renew members based on their annual renewal date.
It is critical for members to complete renewal packets when their renewal is due.
Preparing for the End of the COVID-19 Continuous Coverage Requirement
Health First Colorado will return to normal renewal processes.
- The Department of Health Care Policy & Financing (HCPF) will take 12 months (14 months including noticing) to complete renewals for each of the approximately 1.6 million people currently enrolled.
- It’s essential that members update their contact information so they can receive and respond to their renewal packets.
- Members can find out their renewal dates and access more information at hfcgo.com/renewals.
Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra formally extended the Public Health Emergency (PHE) on January 11, 2023.
The PHE can be extended for up to 90 days at a time. HHS has confirmed that they will provide 60 days advance notice before an end to the PHE. If you the PHE ends on April 11, 2023, we expect to receive 60 days advance notice by February 10, 2023.
Please note that even if the PHE is extended, the continuous coverage requirement ends on April 1, 2023.
Preparation is Happening in Phases
Make sure Health First Colorado can send you important information – update your information today.
Health First Colorado members must respond to communications to keep health coverage active. Those communications will be sent to your address, so it is important that your contact information is up to date.
How Can I Update My Contact Information?
Don’t miss important information. You can update your information in one of these ways:
- Visit Colorado.gov/PEAK. If you don’t have a PEAK account, you can create one at Colorado.gov/PEAK.
- Use the Health First Colorado app on your phone. This free app is for Health First Colorado and CHP+ members. Download it for free in the Google Play or Apple App stores.
- Contact your county department of human services.
Get Help with PEAK
PEAK can be used to apply for coverage, make changes to your account, and check the status of an application on the PEAK website. See the PEAK Guide for detailed help with common tasks.
You can also download the Health First Colorado mobile app to keep your information up to date and find a doctor or dentist right from your phone.
If you need help with a technical issue on PEAK, such as password resets, error messages, or problems with navigation, you can call, chat or email the PEAK Technical Support Center:
Chat: Available 24/7 by clicking Online Assistance at the top of the PEAK site.
Call: 1-800-250-7741 Monday-Friday, 7:30 am to 5:15 pm
At least once per year, Health First Colorado will conduct a review to determine if you and/or your family members still meet Health First Colorado eligibility requirements. This review process is called the renewal process (sometimes called redetermination or RRR).
Step 1: Health First Colorado will send you a letter, email, text and push notification via the Health First Colorado app.
Step 2: Health First Colorado (via Enrollment Broker) will send letters to those who have not taken action. You may also receive outreach from Colorado Community Health Alliance (CCHA) if you are a CCHA member.
Step 3: You will either receive a notice of action approving your continued coverage (no action required to continue current coverage) or you will receive notice that one or more household members are not automatically renewed.
If one or more household members do not automatically renew, Health First Colorado will mail the yearly renewal materials to you and/or your family members 60 days before your redetermination date. It is important that your current contact information is up to date so you can receive these materials. This packet can be completed in person, online or over the phone.
If one or more household members do not automatically renew for Health First Colorado, you will need to take action on your Medicaid renewal.
Step 1: Health First Colorado will mail the yearly renewal materials to you and/or your family members 60 days before your redetermination date. It is important that your current contact information is up to date so you can receive these materials. This packet can be completed in person, online or over the phone.
Step 2: Fill out, sign and return the forms, along with any extra required information. All information must be completed by the deadline provided by HCPF to avoid a break in coverage.
You will continue to have Health First Colorado benefits throughout the redetermination process.
If Health First Colorado determines that you no longer qualify for benefits, you’ll have a limited amount of time to act to get coverage before your *Special Enrollment Period ends. You can quickly see if you are eligible for financial assistance from the government by visiting Connectforhealth.com.
*Special Enrollment Period: Losing health coverage such as Health First Colorado is considered a qualifying event that would trigger a Special Enrollment Period. You are eligible to enroll within 60 days of that event.
Frequently Asked Questions
- How members can update their mailing address and communication preferences English | Spanish
- How the Medicaid and CHP+ Renewal Process Works English | Spanish
- How to Transition from Health First Colorado English | Spanish
- Update your contact information and communication preferences(PDF)
- Update your address(PDF)
- Upload a document(PDF)
Free CCHA Materials
CCHA provides free materials to support the Update Your Address campaign. There are two versions available – one is CCHA-branded and the other provides space for providers or community partners to add their own branding. Both versions are available at CCHAcares.com/order (search Is Your Contact Information Up to Date?).
Sample Renewal Packets
CCHA is here to help!
Need additional support updating your address or have questions about how to prepare for the end of the public health emergency? Contact CCHA Member Support Services.