Thursday, May 09, 2013

Incentifying Illinois's ObamaCare Navigators

From AARP's comments on Illinois's Navigator Program.  Regardless of how paid --per person enrolled or not-- I got a feeling being a Navigator's going to be lucrative work with plenty of opportunties for income enhancement.

Given the valuable service that the Navigator program will provide to consumers and the Exchange, it is essential that compensation be adequate in order to obtain and retain qualified, quality Navigators. We concur with the conclusion that Navigators should not be compensated on a per-enrollment basis.   That structure would incent Navigators to focus on those who would be the easiest to enroll, including those who could compare, select and enroll on-line with little or no assistance.  It would also emphasize initial enrollment over ongoing assistance with problems with obtaining timely access to appropriate health care services, poor customer service, and eligibility for Medicaid or tax subsidies and with transitions required due to changes in employment and income.   While we also support the recommendation for a compensation structure that rewards Navigators based on performance, achievement of enrollment targets is only one appropriate measure.  Incentives should also be based on consumer experience, reductions in enrollment disparities based on race or ethnicity, assistance in obtaining Medicaid coverage and tax subsidies, assistance with problem resolution, and gapless transitions between plans, financial assistance and individual and SHOP coverage.

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