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New Rules Introduced for Health Care Navigators in Texas

Published by: Taran Sidhu

Published on: January 23, 2014

The state insurance commissioner of Texas stated on Tuesday that the Individuals in Texas who are employed to help consumers register for health programs that come under the Affordable Care Act now have to complete compulsory 20 special hours of training.

The Texas Department of Insurance released final latest rules to reinforce the training of navigators who obtained federal grants to assist people purchase insurance coverage on the federally operated health insurance market. These rules are not meant for authorized application counselors who did not acquire a federal grant or for insurance brokers.

These rules will assist in making sure that the Texans have certainty that any person who is registered as a navigator has gone through proper background assessments and obtained the training they require to shield a consumer's highly sensitive and personal data, Texas Insurance Comissioner, Julia Rathgeber said in her statement.

Navigators already are required to accomplish between 25 and 30 hours of federally compulsory training. The Texas training is to be undertaken along with the federal one. The Texas-specific requisites will incorporate: 5 hours of training concerning Medicaid and Children's Health Insurance Plan provision; 5 hours of training on privacy essentials; 5 hours of training on ethics; 2 hours of training on introductory insurance nomenclature and how insurance works; 2 hours of training related to preparing for the exam; and at last, 1 hour final examination.

The department's latest rules that came after 2 public hearings in recent weeks, likewise exclusively forbid some conduct of navigators. They are not allowed to bill consumers for furnishing information, sell insurance coverage, or make recommendations on particular programs.

Navigators won't be instantly impacted by these rules, given that they have until May 1 to finish their needed training and since open enrollment for people concludes on March 31.