Navigators & Assisters Needed for Nevada Healthcare

CARSON CITY, NV - Health care reform will be in full swing in October. That's when those who don't have health insurance will start being required to buy it. Nevada has already set up the Silver State Health Insurance Exchange where Nevadans and small businesses in the state can shop for and compare the best plans for them. While the exchange says its web page will make it easy to do that, there's nothing like the human touch.

Beginning this October, Nevada residents will start buying health insurance as required by federal health care reform.

That enrollment period will go until March of next year.

The Silver State Health Insurance Exchange predicts a total of 118,000 Nevada residents will have health insurance within the first year of enrollment.

While many will buy their health insurance from a private broker, others may need help negotiating the many options available through the insurance exchange.

That's where Navigators and enrollment Assisters come into play.

“We think of those individuals as non-profits, although they could be for-profit entities, they could be unions. They could be all sorts of trade groups, tribal entities, that have access to populations that are typically uninsured or under-insured,” says Jon Hager, Executive Director of the Silver State Health Insurance Exchange.

The state's health exchange has set aside $2.2 Million dollars in grants, looking for people and agencies who will be willing to help others look for the best health insurance for them.

Grant money could be used to pay salaries, equipment, space, even computers--items that could help make the process more efficient and effective.

The exchange will train people as Navigators and enrollment Assisters but they in turn must prove that they can reach populations that are currently uninsured and need help buying a plan that's right for them.

The exchange says looking for and deciding upon the right plan for you or your business could take up to two hours to complete the process.