The following are the most important lessons learned during the planning and implementation of CHI:

  • Set a firm implementation date and commit to it;
  • Identify key stakeholders who will directly impact the success of the program;
  • Provide the administrative continuity required to eliminate barriers to continuous coverage for each child;
  • Develop a clear and continuous communication system to ensure coordinated follow-through;
  • Establish a dedicated 1-888 toll free phone line to provide easy access to the public and a consistent ‘call to action’ in marketing materials;
  • Provide the commitment and resources to deploy a highly trained and effective application assistance team;
  • Hire bi-lingual/bi-cultural staff to promote effective communication between the Certified Application Assistor (CAA) and the family.
  • Locate CAAs at sites where families access healthcare results in a greater number of completed applications;
  • Select committed sites for placement of the CAAs (some criteria that indicate this investment include; onsite leadership who will champion CHI goals, the provision of confidential space, and the use of office equipment as necessary to complete application assistance – such as fax, copier, etc.);
  • Mechanisms for identifying uninsured patients should be firmly in place and all on-site staff members should participate in actively referring those patients to the CAA during the same visit;
  • The application assistance process should include educating applicants on the utilization of the healthcare system;
  • Create a dedicated training and events unit to promote consistent and coordinated education to CHI staff, health providers, and community members; and
  • Successful application events occur when the focus of the event is health related. Participation at all other events is restricted to increasing public awareness and marketing the toll free line.


Health Insurance for Children in Santa Clara County