How would you like to have the title of “Navigator”. Sounds like an appropriate title for someone charting a course for a submarine or a friend riding shotgun on a road trip. Instead “Navigators”are people trained to help consumers buy health coverage through the new insurance exchanges being set up by the Federal Government as a part of the Affordable Care Act.
Navigators will educate people about coverage options and how to choose insurance plans based on their family’s needs and the subsidies they might be eligible for. The federal agency awarded $67 million for navigators nationwide. In Missouri, two groups have been awarded grants to be navigators.
The Department of Health and Human Services awarded The Missouri Association of Area Agencies on Aging, based in Jefferson City $750,000 for exchange work. Slightly more than $1 million was awarded to Primaris Healthcare Business Solutions. Both groups will be charged to find, and help, tens of thousands of Missouri residents sign up for the insurance exchange program, which begins October 1, 2013.
The two associations will partner with a range of community organizations and use public meetings, radio announcements and other means to get the word out that there is help and assistance for people who want to sign up for insurance.
Successful recruitment into the exchanges is a key aspect of making insurance offerings in the exchanges affordable and controlling the subsidy provided by the government.