Mississippi Municipal League Launches Affordable Health Insurance Partnership: Innovative Collaboration Improves Access to Care, Lowers Costs

Today Mississippi Municipal League (MML) announced a groundbreaking partnership of nationally recognized health care organizations to bring small and underserved Mississippi municipalities and communities more affordable health insurance and access to better care. Powered by Ambetter from Magnolia Health, Vigilant Health, and new member services organization Mississippi Communities Health Advisers (MCHA), the partnership brings unprecedented access to coverage and care.

“We are pleased to offer this innovative partnership combining high-quality insurance with accessible care to MML members and their communities,” MML Executive Director Shari Veazey said. “Our health care task force of municipal officers evaluated this and other opportunities for more than two years under the leadership of Mayor Errick Simmons of Greenville. This search was in response to the continued need of small-town Mayors for affordable health care. We are delighted with the partnership and grateful to Magnolia Health for bringing this resource to Mississippi.”

The new program is three-fold, offering better health insurance, community-based health care, and improved access to services. Affordable health insurance through Ambetter from Magnolia Health, a Marketplace Insurance plan under the Affordable Care Act, provides essential benefits and high-quality, locally based health care, at affordable rates. Aaron Sisk, CEO of Ambetter from Magnolia Health, describes Magnolia Health as a national organization led by Mississippians committed to improving the health care and the overall welfare of our state’s communities.

“Ambetter is delighted to bring much more than affordable health insurance to Mississippi communities,” Sisk said. “Our partnership with the MML and Vigilant Health is allowing us to combine comprehensive health insurance with state-of-the-art health care resources at no additional cost to our policy holders.”

Every individual who purchases Ambetter policies will have access to Vigilant Health community-based clinics and services with no waits for care, no limits on visits, and in many cases no out-of-pocket costs of any kind. Municipalities and other governmental entities who self-insure may also participate in the program to realize health plan cost reductions and improved member care through Vigilant Health.

Mississippi Communities Health Advisors (MCHA), the newly created dedicated member services organization for MML members and their communities, facilitates access to Ambetter insurance for individuals and self-insurance solutions for municipalities. The organization is led by Billy Sims, formerly Senior Vice President of Administration at Southern Farm Bureau Life Insurance in Jackson.

“Together, Ambetter, Vigilant Health, and MCHA provide a powerful option for delivering insurance and care affordably using data analytics and direct health care,” Sims said. “This will have long-term positive effects on Mississippi, and we commend the MML leadership for their resourcefulness, willingness, and courage to seek new health care solutions for underserved communities.”

Mayor Jimmy Rafferty of Pass Christian serves on the board of directors for MCHA and appreciates the benefits the program will bring statewide. “This program provides enhanced access and care to municipalities and offers individuals in participating communities the enhanced services and care their municipalities receive,” Rafferty said. “It also provides municipalities too small to self-insure the opportunity to join a larger plan with the benefits of scale and management larger cities enjoy. In addition, the Ambetter policies will fill the coverage and care gaps for those ineligible for Medicaid and who don’t have access to employer health plans.”


About Mississippi Municipal League

The mission of the Mississippi Municipal League is helping cities and towns excel. MML is a non-partisan association established in 1931, representing 290 city, town, and village governments in Mississippi. MML is also affiliated with the National League of Cities, a lobbying, legislative, and legal arm representing municipalities before the U.S. Congress. For more information about the Mississippi Municipal League, visit www.mmlonline.com.


About Ambetter from Magnolia Health

Ambetter from Magnolia Health is Mississippi’s largest Health Insurance Marketplace insurer, with more than 150,000 members in 2023. Magnolia Health’s parent is the largest national Marketplace carrier with more than 2 million members. Ambetter from Magnolia Health is led by an executive team in Ridgeland and employs 200+ Mississippians. Ambetter is the only Marketplace carrier in Mississippi from the inception of the Health Insurance Marketplace. Its network of physicians and providers includes all major hospitals and physician groups in Mississippi. Ambetter is part of the federal Health Insurance Marketplace and provides subsidies that substantially reduce the costs of both premiums and out-of-pocket costs for many individuals based on family income. Over 90% of Ambetter members in Mississippi receive a subsidy to help reduce their insurance premium. Almost 50% of Ambetter from Magnolia Health members have a $0 deductible. Learn more at www.ambetter.magnoliahealthplan.com.


About Vigilant Health

Vigilant Health is a nationally recognized provider organization that has integrated health care delivery, information technology, and an innovative payment model to deliver predictable long-term outcomes, substantial cost savings, and high patient engagement. Vigilant produces the same superior results in every demographic, every payer group, and every market, including Medicaid, the most challenging diabetes and chronic disease patients, and under-served communities in the deep south. Vigilant’s self-insured clients include the City of Vicksburg, South Central Regional Medical Center, Southern Farm Bureau Life Insurance, Taylor Group, Levi Strauss, Baptist Health in Little Rock, and the Mississippi School and State Employees Health Insurance Plan. Learn more at www.vigilant-health.com.


About Mississippi Communities Health Advisers

Mississippi Communities Health Advisers was created to provide dedicated member resources for the communities and individuals who purchase Ambetter policies as part of the MCHA partnership. Its purpose is to improve access to coverage and access to care by providing essential information and guidance about the choices, coverage, and costs of health insurance. For more information, contact MCHA at (769) 241-2424 or (888) 343-2999 or visit www.mscommunitieshealth.com.