Author Archive

UPHP Update on Sunny 101.9: Tobacco Cessation and COPD
Posted on November 04, 2021
Fred Stover on Sunny 101.9

During our latest update on Sunny 101.9, UPHP Clinical Coordinator Fred Stover, LPN, joined Mark and Walt in the Morning to discuss tobacco cessation and Chronic Pulmonary Obstructive Disorder (COPD) Awareness Month. Stover encouraged individuals to make a plan with their health care provider(s) to quit tobacco, and also take advantage of the free Michigan Tobacco Quitline resource, which is available by calling 1-800-QUIT-NOW.

He also explained COPD, which is a serious lung disease often caused by prolonged cigarette use, or exposure to secondhand smoke or other irritants that can damage your lungs. Learn more about COPD by listening to the full interview below!

UPHP Continues to Offer Local, Affordable Medicare Advantage Plans for UP Residents in 2022; Adds Optional Dental Supplemental Benefit
Posted on October 25, 2021
Shine brighter with UPHP Medicare Advantage Plans

Marquette, Mich. — Upper Peninsula Health Plan (UPHP) will once again be offering two Medicare Advantage Plans exclusively to Upper Peninsula residents in 2022. Plan options include UPHP Advantage (HMO-POS) and UPHP Choice (HMO), both of which cover hospital insurance (Medicare Part A), medical insurance (Medicare Part B), and prescription drug coverage (Medicare Part D). Additionally, depending on the plan, supplemental benefits* include preventive and comprehensive dental, hearing, vision, telehealth visits, point-of-service, access to a 24-hour nurse advice line, and our LiveFit gym membership. Plan monthly premiums start as low as $0 per month.

New in 2022, UPHP will also offer current and new Medicare Advantage members the option to add a supplemental benefit, the UPHP Dental Premium Plan, for an additional $20 per month premium. This plan offers coverage beyond the preventive and comprehensive dental services already covered under UPHP Advantage and UPHP Choice. Specifically, it covers:

  • 0% coinsurance on anesthesia (when administered in conjunction with qualifying covered services), and basic services, including films, tests, and simple extractions.
  • 50% coinsurance on bridges, crowns, crown repairs, dentures, fillings, oral surgery, periodontics, radiographs, and relines and repairs to bridges and dentures. 
  • $2,500 annual maximum benefit for in-network services. 

To learn more about UPHP Medicare Advantage plan coverage and better understand your Medicare options, visit Here, individuals can compare UPHP plans, view the 2022 Summary of Benefits, download our free Medicare Guide, and enroll. As a reminder to those who are Medicare eligible, the Medicare Annual Election Period is Oct. 15 through Dec. 7.

Individuals who have questions can call UPHP Customer Service at 1-877-349-9324 (TTY: 711), Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. Eastern Time, with weekend hours from Oct. 1 through March 31. The call is free. 

About UPHP

Upper Peninsula Health Plan currently serves nearly 55,000 members across six product lines (Michigan Medicaid, MIChild, Children with Special Health Care Services, Healthy Michigan Plan, MI Health Link, and Medicare Advantage) and its network exceeds 2,300 providers.

Upper Peninsula Health Plan (UPHP) Advantage is an HMO-POS plan with a Medicare contract. UPHP Choice is an HMO plan with a Medicare contract. Enrollment in UPHP depends on contract renewal.

* This is not a complete list of benefits; benefits may vary by plan. 

UPHP Update on Sunny 101.9: The Flu Season and Vaccinations
Posted on October 19, 2021
Renee Anderton on Sunny 101.9

Upper Peninsula Health Plan Clinical Coordinator Renee Anderton joined Mark and Walt in the morning on Sunny 101.9 in October to discuss the upcoming flu season. During her interview, she described what the flu is, common symptoms, common misconceptions, what can be done to prevent it, the flu vaccine, and more! Anderton discussed the importance of getting vaccinated to protect ourselves, our families, and our communities. It is recommended that all individuals over the age of six months (with limited exceptions) get the flu vaccine every year.

MAHP celebrates health plan innovation in 21st Annual Pinnacle Awards
Posted on October 11, 2021

This article was originally released by the Michigan Association of Health Plans on Sept. 24, 2021, and can be found here.

Eight Michigan health plans from across the state submitted 24 ground-breaking programs to the Michigan Association of Health Plans Foundation Pinnacle Awards, leading the health care industry with innovative programs to improve patient health care, lower costs and increase services to Michigan citizens.

The winners were presented at a reception on Tuesday, September 28th, 2021 at the Radisson Hotel in Lansing. Health Alliance Plan captured two awards and Priority Health, MeridianHealth, McLaren Health Plan, UnitedHealthCare and Upper Peninsula Health Plan all received one as well and Molina received an honorable mention.

MAHP shares the winning programs among members, helping them adopt best practices throughout the state’s health plans. This year’s winners address issues from COVID-19 mitigation efforts to food insecurity to addressing social determinants of health that trigger asthma.

“I’m pleased to see the innovation and continual improvement processes used by MAHP members to address key issues aimed at improving the health of their members and their communities,” said Dominick Pallone, executive director of MAHP. “It’s truly an honor to recognize these achievements and watch many be adopted around the state and nation.”

Health plans submit new programs to a judging panel comprised of health care experts and lawmakers. The panel reviewed submissions in depth before selecting winners in various categories for commercial health insurers and Medicaid health plans. Full details on each winner are available at

Following are brief descriptions of winning programs:

2021 Immunization

“Health Alliance Plan COVID-19 Vaccination Project”

After the start of the pandemic in 2020, Health Alliance Plan (HAP) made it their mission to educate their members about COVID-19 while also simultaneously preparing for COVID-19 mitigation efforts. HAP is on track to reach their goal of 70% of members receiving the COVID-19 vaccine by October 1st, 2021, and more than 78,000 doses of the vaccine have been administered at HAP Troy, serving nearby communities and the Henry Ford Health System.

2021 Chronic Disease Management: Government Programs: Medicare

“HAP Improves Osteoporosis Management in Women”

HAP’s Osteoporosis Management in Women (OMW) program measures the number of women ages 67-85 who have had a fracture and received appropriate treatment within six months of their initial injury. Their program started in 2016 and have since enhanced it so more women can get important treatment. 70% of HAP’s eligible members are expected to receive treatment in 2021, which is a 52% increase from 2017. HAP is also expected to receive a five-star CMS quality rating in 2022.

2021 Community Outreach: Single Plan

“McLaren FIRST”

McLaren FIRST is a comprehensive program that addresses food insecurity across the state. The program provides families with transportation to local food pantries, delivery of a two-week food supply directly to their doorstep and identification of social determinants of health that are the root cause of their food insecurity challenges. By addressing hunger across their communities, McLaren is playing a role in improving the overall health of their members.

2021 Clinical Service Improvement: Government Programs

“Connecting with Pregnant Moms through CHWs”

Meridian’s maternity program targets low and moderate risk members for case management during their pregnancy and postpartum period. 1,429 members were successfully enrolled with Community Health Workers (CHWs) for ongoing case management, and the enrolled members were then contacted 2,685 times by their assigned CHW for ongoing support. The Meridian CHWs educated members on the importance of prenatal and postpartum care, and had an emphasis on educating members on support available across their communities, like the Maternal Infant Health Program.

2021 Chronic Disease Management: Government Programs: Medicaid

“Asthma Environmental Housing Project”

Priority Health partnered with community organizations to provide in-home visits dedicated to health education and social determinants of health that are known to trigger asthma. Priority’s Medicaid Asthma Environmental Housing Program reduced emergency department visits by 61.4 percent and decreased annual medical spending by $675,274. Households received tailored asthma education, an asthma management plan, community health worker support, and housing repairs where possible.

2021 Business Operational Performance: Government Programs

“Proactive Provider Outreach”

UnitedHealthCare’s Proactive Provider Outreach is an initiative that targets specific claims in new day/original submission and evaluates internal systems. The main goals of the initiative include speeding up cashflow for providers, mitigating inappropriate denials, improving provider relationships and reducing rework and denial rates for providers. By evaluating their internal processes, UnitedHealthcare can identify any gaps in provider billing behaviors and send instant resolution and education.

2021 Community Outreach: Collaborative

“Marquette County Community Resource Fair and Forum”

UPHP led a two-part event in 2019, which included a forum for community-based organizations (CBOs) and health care providers to connect and learn about each other’s offerings, followed by a large-scale community resource fair that provided a practical opportunity to connect individuals with resources to meet their daily needs. The event was heavily attended and well-received by all.

Honorable mention:

2021 Integration: Medicaid

“Molina-Hegira Behavioral Health Collaboration”

Molina Healthcare and Hegira collaborated to create an emergency department (ED) diversion program for Medicare members presenting with acute behavioral health conditions at hospitals across Wayne County. The Community Outreach for Psychiatric Emergencies program (COPE) is a 24-hour service with a purpose of keeping members safe through crisis intervention and support as an alternative to hospitalization. Since its creation, 29 percent of members were successfully diverted from emergency departments.

UPHP Update on Sunny 101.9: Medicare Annual Enrollment Period
Posted on October 04, 2021
Jennifer Wieczorek

UPHP Business Development Specialist Jennifer Wieczorek joined Mark and Walt in the morning on Sunny 101.9 to discuss the Medicare Annual Enrollment Period, which runs Oct. 15 through Dec. 7. During this time, eligible individuals can change their Medicare health plan or prescription drug coverage to better meet their needs for the following year. Listen in below to learn more, or visit to

UPHP Update on Sunny 101.9: Hepatitis C Testing & Treatment
Posted on August 09, 2021
Susanne Wicklund, UPHP Community Health Worker

UPHP Community Health Worker Susanne Wicklund, BS, CADC, joined Mark and Walt in the Morning on Sunny 101.9 in August to discuss hepatitis C and the importance of getting tested! Wicklund explained that hepatitis C is a liver infection caused by the hepatitis C virus. It is spread through contact with blood from an infected person, and many times, people with hepatitis C often don’t feel sick. That’s why testing is recommended at least once in a lifetime for all adults, and for pregnant women with each pregnancy. Hepatitis C is very curable, but if left untreated, can lead to health problems like cirrhosis and liver cancer. Listen to the full interview below to learn more!

UPHP Update on Sunny 101.9: Healthy Kids, Healthy Futures
Posted on July 14, 2021
Chelsea Ely, LPN at Sunny 101.9 Studio

Upper Peninsula Health Plan Clinical Coordinator Chelsea Ely, LPN, joined Mark and Walt in the Morning on Sunny 101.9 this month to promote our annual Healthy Kids, Healthy Futures campaign! The campaign, which runs July 6 through Sept. 30, puts a spotlight on the importance of preventive health care for kids, teens, and young adults, and encourages yearly well-care visits and immunizations. Ely discussed that when kids see their primary care provider regularly, there’s a higher chance that physical or emotional health issues can be caught early when they’re more treatable. She added that well-care visits help promote lifelong health for kids by starting healthy habits early and showing them it’s important to take care of their health.

UPHP members ages three to 21 who complete their annual well-care visit at participating provider offices will be entered into a drawing for prizes at each practice!

UPHP Update on Sunny 101.9: Oral Health and Dental Access
Posted on June 07, 2021
Krystina Gwinn and Steve Rudness

Krystina Gwinn, customer service manager, and Steve Rudness, LMSW, clinical coordinator-program lead, Upper Peninsula Health Plan, joined Mark and Walt in the Morning on Sunny 101.9 in June to talk about the importance of oral health and dental coverage. Rudness discussed the connection between oral health and overall health and how to maintain good oral hygiene, while Gwinn touched on how UPHP members can go about finding a dental provider and accessing covered services.

UPHP Update on Sunny 101.9: Marquette County Community Resource Fair
Posted on May 05, 2021
Katrina Keough, UPHCS Project Director

Upper Peninsula Health Care Solutions Project Director Katrina Keough, MPA, joined Mark and Walt in the Morning on Sunny 101.9 this month to discuss our upcoming Marquette County Community Resource Fair. Keough explained that the fair is taking place June 4, 2021, at Lakeview Arena/YMCA in Marquette from noon to 4 p.m. The fair will be held in a drive-thru “Express Style” format due to the continuation of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Feeding America Mobile Food Truck will be onsite to provide attendees with groceries, and additionally, tote bags will be distributed containing essential items and resource handouts from local community-based organizations.

3rd Annual Marquette County Community Resource Fair to be Offered “Express Style”
Posted on May 03, 2021

Updated 5/20/2021

MARQUETTE, Mich. – Citizens of Marquette County are invited to join Upper Peninsula Health Plan (UPHP) and Upper Peninsula Health Care Solutions (UPHCS) for the third annual Marquette County Community Resource Fair, taking place Friday, June 4, in Marquette. Due to the current pandemic and the need to adhere to social distancing guidelines, this year’s event will again be held in a drive-through “Express Style” in the parking lot of Lakeview Arena/YMCA.

Free and open to the public, the fair will connect residents with resources from local organizations that are available to assist and support their day-to-day health and social needs. Informational handouts will be distributed in tote bags, along with essential items. The Feeding America Mobile Food Truck will also be onsite again this year to provide groceries to those who attend. Additionally, 200 doses of the one-dose Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine will be available for attendees who wish to receive it. No appointments or pre-registration are necessary; doses will be administered on a first-come, first-served basis. Individuals must be 18 years or older to be eligible.

“Due to the major impact that COVID-19 continues to have on our community, now more than ever, people need help,” said UPHP Chief Executive Officer Melissa Holmquist. “Many people have lost their jobs and livelihood as a result of the pandemic and may be unaware of the community resources available to help them. We hope this event will help make that connection, and provide people with the goods and services they need to get through this difficult time.”

Individuals planning to attend should enter into the Lakeview Arena parking lot from Pine Street. From there, traffic will flow through the main parking lot of the YMCA in front of the building, where the food truck will be parked and resource bags will be distributed. Items will be pre-boxed and placed in individuals’ trunks. Attendees should exit the arena parking lot onto Fair Avenue.

Although the drive-through method is preferred, individuals without vehicles will be allowed to walk through the event, following social distancing guidelines of maintaining a six-foot distance from others. Masks are strongly encouraged. Several volunteers will be onsite to help direct traffic and distribute the food and resource bags. All volunteers will be taking precautions to make sure this event is as safe as possible.

Additionally, UPHP and UPHCS are seeking donations from area community-based organizations to help support this event; please contact UPHP at 1-800-835-2556 if your organization is interested.

Event Information:

  • When: June 4, 2021, from noon to 4 p.m.
  • Where: Lakeview Arena/YMCA Parking Lot
    401 East Fair Avenue
    Marquette, MI 49855


MQT CO Resources Fair Flyer
Resource Fair Map Updated