COVID-19 and Your Health First Colorado and Child Health Plan Plus (CHP+) Coverage

Kim Bimestefer A message from HCPF Exec. Director Kim Bimestefer about keeping your family safe during the Thanksgiving holiday.


For the latest information about coronavirus (COVID-19) in Colorado, please visit the State of Colorado’s COVID-19 site.

Your Health and Safety Is Our Priority

COVID-19 SymptomsOur members’ health and safety is our top priority. Health First Colorado is working with our government partners and all Health First Colorado doctors and providers to make sure our members will get the care they need.

We want all our members to know:

  • If you think you may have coronavirus (COVID-19) or think you’ve been exposed, you need to talk to your doctor (primary care provider) first. Do not go to your doctor’s office without calling first. If your doctor agrees that you may have coronavirus (COVID-19), they will place an order for you to get a test. You cannot get a test without a doctor’s order.
  • If you are not sure who your primary care provider is, call Health First Colorado Enrollment at 303-839-2120 or 888-367-6557 (State Relay 711) during regular business hours.
  • If you are a Health First Colorado member and not able to get in touch with your primary care provider or get an appointment, then call your regional organization during regular business hours. Find more about your regional organization.
  • If you are a CHP+ member and not able to get in touch with your primary care provider or get an appointment, then call your health plan (managed care organization).
  • Another option if you have questions about your health is to call the Health First Colorado Nurse Advice Line. The Nurse Advice Line gives you free medical information and advice 24 hours a day, every day of the year. Talk to a nurse who will answer medical questions, give you care advice, and help you decide if you should see a provider right away. Call 800-283-3221.
  • Health First Colorado will cover testing for coronavirus (COVID-19). Members will not have co-pays for testing.

Tips to Protect Our Communities

The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) has the most accurate information about coronavirus (COVID-19) in Colorado and tips to protect our communities. Learn more on the CDPHE website.

Add Exposure Notifications to your phone

Find out sooner if you may have been exposed to COVID-19 by turning on Exposure Notifications on your phone. The service doesn’t share your location or personal information and you can turn it on and off at any time. Learn how to add your iPhone or Android phone at addyourphone.com.

Health Tips

  • Stay at home as much as possible.
  • Practice good hygiene. Wash your hands frequently and don’t touch your face.
  • Wear a face covering or mask when you leave your home.
  • Connect with neighbors and loved ones virtually.
  • Be calm and prepared. Learn more.

How You Can Help

This is a time when we all need to do our part to protect our fellow Coloradans. Thank you to all who
are stepping up already. Some ways that you can help:

  • Post your photos of practicing social distancing or helping your neighbors with the hashtag #DoingMyPartCO to participate in our social media challenge.
  • Donate to COVID-19 Relief Fund at HelpColoradoNow.org
  • Sign up to volunteer at HelpColoradoNow.org
  • Donate blood; visit vitalant.org to find a location to donate near you.
  • Donate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to the state or your local public health
    department.

Answers to Your Questions

Jump to a section below:


General Questions About Coronavirus (COVID-19)

  • Please go to the State of Colorado’s COVID-19 site for answers to your questions about coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms, spread, testing, cases in Colorado, and other general questions.

Getting Care / Seeing a Doctor

  • What should I do if I think I have the virus or have been exposed to somebody who tested positive?
    • Call your primary care provider (PCP) if you have questions about your symptoms or think you need to be seen.
    • If you aren’t sure if you need to go to the emergency room, urgent care or your PCP, call your PCP or the Health First Colorado Nurse Advice Line at 800-283-3221. This line gives you free medical information and advice 24 hours a day, every day of the year. The Nurse Advice Line is receiving many calls at this time, so please be patient if you are placed on hold. There is a long wait time, and you may have to leave your name and number to get a call back. 
    • If you believe you need immediate medical attention, please call 911 or go to your nearest hospital.
  • I’m not sure who my primary care provider (PCP) is. What should I do?
    • Every Health First Colorado and CHP+ member is assigned a PCP, but you can also see other Health First Colorado and CHP+ PCPs. If you aren’t sure who your PCP is, open your member card in the Health First Colorado app or online at CO.gov/PEAK. Or, contact Health First Colorado Enrollment or your regional organization or your health plan (managed care organization).
      • Download the free Health First Colorado app in the App Store or Google Play. Log in using your PEAK account. Tap the ID card icon at the bottom of your screen to open your member ID card.
      • To contact Health First Colorado enrollment, visit the enrollment site or call 303-839-2120 (in Denver) or 1-888-367-6557 (outside of Denver). Hours: Monday-Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. (closed state holidays).
      • Health First Colorado members: to find out who your regional organization is.
  • What should I do if I’m not sure whether to go to the emergency room or urgent care?
    • If you aren’t sure if you need to go to the emergency room or urgent care, call the Nurse Advice Line. The Health First Colorado Nurse Advice Line gives you free medical information and advice 24 hours a day, every day of the year. Talk to a nurse who will answer medical questions, give you care advice, and help you decide if you should see a provider right away. Call 800-283-3221. The Nurse Advice Line is receiving many calls at this time, so please be patient if you are placed on hold. There is a long wait time, and you may have to leave your name and number to get a call back.
  • Will Health First Colorado cover testing for COVID-19?
    • Health First Colorado will cover testing for coronavirus (COVID-19). Members will not have co-pays for testing. Health First Colorado will cover treatment for members who need treatment. Most members who develop COVID-19 will get better recovering at home.  
  • Is telemedicine covered?
    • All Health First Colorado members qualify for telemedicine, whether they live in rural or urban areas. Members should check with their provider to see if they can do telephone or video appointments. You can use telemedicine for routine medical care, therapy appointments, speech therapy, pregnancy ultrasounds, and other appointments. We are posting current information and updates about telemedicine online.
  • If I get sick while I’m traveling, will Health First Colorado cover my care in another state?
    • You may see a provider that is out of state if the provider accepts Health First Colorado and:
      • You are traveling or visiting another state in the United States and have an emergency
      • You would put your health in danger by going back to Colorado for care
    • If you are out of state and not sure if you need to see a doctor right away, call the Nurse Advice Line at 800-283-3221 (State Relay 711). The Nurse Advice Line is receiving many calls at this time, so please be patient if you are placed on hold. There is a long wait time, and you may have to leave your name and number to get a call back.
    • If you believe you need immediate medical attention, please call 911 or go to your nearest hospital.
  • Is it safe to go to the doctor?
    • Doctors’ offices are changing how they do business to keep people protected, while making sure they can get the care they need. If you need to see your provider, call ahead for an appointment. It’s important to still go to the hospital in case of emergency, and to make an appointment for both sick and well care.
  • My child missed a well-child appointment or newborn care visit during the stay-at-home order. Should I reschedule the appointment?
    • Call your provider. In-person newborn care, well-child visits and immunizations are still a priority. Contact your provider if your child is due for immunizations or needs to catch up on any they may have missed. 
  • This situation can be stressful. If you need professional and immediate support for any mental health, substance use or emotional concern, call Colorado Crisis Services at 1-844-493-TALK or text “TALK” to 38255 or chat online at coloradocrisisservices.org.

Prescriptions / Pharmacy

  • How can I make sure I get my needed medical supplies and prescriptions?
    • Consider use of prescription delivery services or mail-order services if offered by your pharmacy. Some retail pharmacies are waiving delivery fees. Mail order pharmacies ship maintenance medications from the pharmacy directly to your home.
    • Pharmacies working under normal business operations will continue to fill prescriptions. You can call your pharmacy (or go to their website) to inquire about any changes with your prescriptions.
    • If you can’t get your prescription delivered by mail, you can get early refills for your medication. Talk to your pharmacist if you need an early refill. If your pharmacist has questions, they should call the Pharmacy Help Desk at 800-424-5725.
  • Can I get more than a 30 day supply of my prescription
    • Most medications for ongoing health conditions are covered for a 3-month supply. The best way to address your specific needs is to talk to your pharmacy.

In-Home Care

  • What happens if my home health worker gets sick?
    • Make sure your home care agency knows about the diagnosis and will send someone to clean areas of your home the attendant was in.
    • Use the CDC’s hygiene and prevention steps.
    • Work with your home care agency to make sure they find support for you. Contact your Case Management Agency for their help. Get a list of agencies by county for members with an IDD and members without an IDD.
  • If I am diagnosed with coronavirus (COVID-19), should I tell my home health worker?
    • Call your PCP and contact the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment at (303) 692-2700.
    • Call your home care agency to make sure they know about your diagnosis. Work with your home care agency to make sure they find support for you. Contact your Case Management Agency for their help. Get a list of agencies by county for members with an IDD and members without an IDD.
    • Use the CDC’s hygiene and prevention steps.

We are working with all Health First Colorado providers to make sure our members get the best care possible. Members with questions about their Home and Community-Based Services should contact their case manager.


Transportation

  • Am I still able to get a ride to the doctor (non-emergency medical transportation)? Will I be able to get a ride to the doctor or hospital if I have coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms?
    • Members are able to use non-emergency medical transportation to get to medical appointments. Learn more about non-emergent medical transportation. When you request a ride and think you may have coronavirus (COVID-19), please say so.
    • If you have severe symptoms and think it is an emergency, call 911 or go to your nearest hospital.

Applying For Coverage / Maintaining Benefits

  • I usually go to my county for help with my benefits. Is there something else I can do to get help while the virus is spreading?
    • Changes to your case and documents can be submitted through the PEAK website or the Health First Colorado mobile app and is received by the county to process; there is no need to be interviewed or submit documentation in-person. Because of the large volume of calls from members, there may be delays in reaching your county worker. We recommend making updates to your information using the PEAK website or Health First Colorado mobile app.
  • Will my application or redetermination be delayed?
    • Processing times for benefits may be impacted in certain situations; however, at this time, the majority of cases are processed within federally required timeframes.
  • Do I need to worry about losing my coverage during this time?
    • During the COVID-19 public health emergency, we are keeping you covered so you don’t have to worry about the health and wellbeing of your family.
    • The federal government has extended the public health emergency through at least Jan. 21, and may extend it further. That means you can rest assured we have you covered until at least then.
    • We have asked for at least two months’ notice so we can notify you in advance if there will be changes to your benefits. If you are no longer eligible or your benefits change, we will provide you as much notice as possible.

Applications submitted online through PEAK are eligible to receive an immediate online determination without the need for a worker to review. Applicants are encouraged to use PEAK to receive a real time eligibility determination.


COVID-19 Economic Impact Payments (stimulus checks)

  • How will I get an economic impact payment (stimulus check)?
    • Most eligible U.S. taxpayers will automatically receive their Economic Impact Payments including:
      • People who filed a federal income tax for 2018 or 2019
      • People who receive Social Security retirement, disability (SSDI), survivor benefits, or Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
      • People who receive Railroad Retirement benefits
    • Many people who don’t normally file a federal tax return are able to receive a payment, including many people with little or no income. If you do not normally file a tax return, you can enter your information on the IRS website to get your economic impact payment.
  • Are Economic Impact Payments (stimulus checks) counted as income?
      • The relief payment to individuals and families is NOT counted as income for Health First Colorado and CHP+ eligibility.

Didn’t see an answer to your question?

Let us know your COVID-19 questions, and we’ll do our best to answer the most common questions on our website.


Get the Latest Information

We will update this website with the latest information about your health care benefits. We are also updating our members by email, text message, and the Health First Colorado app. Go to CO.gov/PEAK and update your communication preferences to make sure you’re getting the latest information. Download the Health First Colorado mobile app from the app store.

COVID-19 Information For Members