GKV to Create Public Service Campaign for Medicaid Re‑Enrollment in MD

March 15, 2023

GKV, a full-service advertising and communications agency, has been awarded the critical task of creating a public service campaign, encouraging Maryland’s 1.7 million Medicaid enrollees to reapply for benefits.

Under the COVID-19 Federal Public Health Emergency (PHE) which began in March 2020, guidelines for qualifying for health insurance through Medicaid and the Maryland Children’s Health Program (MCHP) were eased to accommodate many people who became uninsured due to layoffs, businesses closing and other pandemic-related hardships. Those already enrolled in Medicaid have not had to reapply annually to maintain benefits, which had been the norm. In December 2022, Congress voted to end the continuous enrollment provision. Now, Medicaid enrollees will need to reapply for benefits or will stand to lose their health insurance if they are not aware of the need to reapply.

“Our teams are dedicated to generating awareness about the Medicaid redetermination process and will help guide enrollees on how they can take action,” said Andrew Robinson, GKV Senior Vice President and Account Director, who is managing the project. “We want to maintain a positive tone and help people feel empowered to complete the important task of renewing their coverage for themselves and their families.”

Developing the year-long public awareness and education campaign will require collaboration with a dozen partners, including the Maryland Managed Care Organization Association (MMCOA), which represents the nine managed care organizations (MCOs) that provide health care services to Marylanders receiving Medicaid; the Maryland Department of Health (MDH); and the Maryland Health Connection.  The Medicaid Check-In campaign, recently announced by the Maryland Department of Health, is GKV’s first effort with partners to encourage Marylanders enrolled in Medicaid and MCHP to update their contact information and to generate awareness for the resumption of renewals.

“Since the PHE was declared, the number of Marylanders receiving Medicaid benefits has increased significantly. Our goal is to efficiently renew as many qualified Marylanders as possible before the deadline next year, so thousands of residents don’t suddenly find themselves without health insurance,” said Jennifer L. Briemann, MMCOA Executive Director.

“For the nine MCOs serving Medicaid members, it is our top priority to ensure that qualified Marylanders maintain their Medicaid coverage.  We are excited to partner with GKV, MDH and the Maryland Health Connection,” said Kathlyn Wee, CEO of UnitedHealthcare Community Plan of Maryland, and President of the MMCOA Board of Directors. “This Medicaid re-enrollment campaign will be challenging not only because it involves many partners, but also because the intended audience is diverse, multilingual and some segments are hard to reach.”

GKV will employ multiple platforms for the Medicaid renewal campaign, including television, cable, radio, digital, print, billboards, social media and text-messaging marketing. In addition, the campaign will leverage advertising and communications opportunities in health care provider facilities and retail venues.

Development of the campaign began in August with the intended launch of April 2023. The campaign will run through April 2024. Messaging will focus on the importance of reapplying and how to do so, with advertising running statewide and also targeting zip codes with large numbers of enrollees.

Marylanders currently receiving Medicaid benefits will be directed to the Maryland Health Connection website to reapply. Recipients who no longer qualify will be assisted by the Health Benefit Exchange to obtain health insurance through other low-cost plans.

The nine MCOs providing health care services to Maryland’s Medicaid population include:

Aetna Better Health; CareFirst Community Health Plan; Jai Medical Systems; Kaiser Permanente; Maryland Physicians Care; MedStar Family Choice; Priority Partners; UnitedHealthcare Community Plan and Wellpoint.

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