HaineFloorShot5SPRINGFIELD, IL – Small business owners and people seeking individual health insurance plans are one step closer to having a resource to assist them with next year’s new health insurance exchanges.

The Insurance Navigator Act, which passed the Senate today, will give people a new resource to understand health care exchanges created by the federal Affordable Care Act.

“People may have some apprehension about these new insurance exchanges,” Senator Bill Haine (D- Alton) said. “These navigators, working with insurance agents, will fill a vital need to help people explore this new process.”

This proposal allows the Illinois Department of Insurance to certify health insurance exchange navigators. These navigators are neutral parties who help individuals interact with health insurance exchanges.

The bill has received support from both consumer protection advocates and members of the insurance industry.

“The bill provides clear guidelines for the activities of navigators in Illinois, protects consumers by granting oversight by the Department of Insurance and establishes a bright line between the activities of navigators and insurance producers,” Phil Lackman—Vice President of Government Relations for the Coalition of Insurance Agents and Producers—said.

Navigators will raise awareness of qualified health exchange plans, distribute impartial information regarding health plan enrollment and personally assist people throughout the enrollment process.

The Affordable Care Act became federal law in 2010 with the insurance exchange portion of the law taking effect in 2014. These exchanges give individuals and small businesses a marketplace to compare and choose from different healthcare plans.

The Insurance Navigator Act was accepted without opposition, and now moves to the House for approval.

Category: News Releases

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