Navigators will help customers to Colorado’s new marketplace for insurance, the Colorado Health Benefits Exchange (COHBE), which is being created under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. These navigators will play an important role in helping customers, including individuals, families and small businesses, research and enroll in new health coverage.
The Colorado Consumer Health Initiative and the Colorado Center on Law and Policy have authored these principles for navigators serving consumers purchasing coverage in the COHBE. To write these principles we gathered input (and still are) from CCHI’s membership and other stakeholders, including health care providers.
The Principles Include:
- Navigators should be first and foremost responsible to consumers, those who need and will use the exchange to access health coverage.
- Navigators should be experts in health coverage (private and public) so that there are more doors available to consumers to get health coverage.
- Navigators should be accessible to customers, through online, telephone and in-person channels. They should also be accesible to all types of customers, including people who do not speak English and people with disabilities.
- Navigators should be appropriately trained and certified so that they can help all customers pick the most appropriate coverage for their needs.
- Navigators should be culturally representative of and responsive to all Coloradans. This includes Coloradans from rural and diverse groups.
- The navigator program should be set up to be sustainable and build on current consumer assistance programs in Colorado.
- Navigators should be accountable and held to high quality standards so customers of the exchange have access to information that fits their needs.
Full implementation of Obamacare in 2014 will be the first time many people and small businesses will have access to or be able to provide health coverage. Strong navigator programs will be vital to ensure all Coloradans have access to coverage that will provide them the health care they need when they need it. See the full recommendations here.
For more information on these principles you can contact Debra Judy at firstname.lastname@example.org.