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Wisconsin Health Signups On Track Amid Concerns As Latino Enrollment Lags

Applicants Aren't Required To Provide Race, Ethnicity Information.


Wisconsin is keeping pace with federal enrollment goals for the health care marketplace, but there’s concern that not enough Latinos have signed up.

The most recent data from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services shows more than 56,000 Wisconsin residents have signed up for private health coverage through the marketplace. Federal health officials have made information public about applicants’ gender and age, but officials said they don’t have reliable and complete data on race and ethnicity at this time. Applicants aren’t required to provide that information.

However, a Milwaukee lawmaker representing a large number of Latinos, says federal officials have told her signups for that demographic are falling short in Wisconsin.

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“Latino enrollment is still very low in Milwaukee. I decided it’s my charge to make this push in the last month [of open enrollment] to encourage one of Wisconsin’s fastest growing communities to get informed and enroll in affordable health care,” state Rep. JoCasta Zamarripa said.

The Spanish version of the federal healthcare website, CuidadodeSalud.gov, launched late and had grammatical errors which officials say have been fixed. Zamarripa said she doesn’t believe these problems caused problems for Wisconsin Latinos, most of whom she said are bilingual or got help enrolling from family or friends who speak both languages.

The deadline for open enrollment is March 31.