Under the Affordable Care Act, Louisiana has a federally-facilitated Health Insurance Marketplace where health insurance plans are available to consumers. Participation, penalties, and particular benefits for all are mandated components of this Act. Federal subsidies are provided on a sliding scale for those whose income is between 100 and 400 percent of poverty. Producers and Navigators play a role in educating consumers about the Marketplace, helping them compare plans and determine eligibility for subsidies.
Producers also help consumers enroll in coverage on the Individual Marketplace and on the Small Business Health Options Program (SHOP) Marketplace. Producers are required to be trained and certified to sell insurance on the Federally-facilitated Marketplace as an agent each year. The Health and Human Services (HHS) Medicare Learning Network (MLN) is a training website that auto-assigns specific training to you once you select your user role. Producers should complete initial registration with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). Then complete the training and testing and create an account. The CMS agent and broker resources page is a good resource. Plan to complete training for the 2015 plan year curriculum by September 30, 2014, when current agent/broker agreements expire. Open enrollment begins November 15.
Once you have completed the training, remember to update your credentials as “HHS Certified” on the LDI website at the Industry Access Portal as well.
You can find more information about the Health Insurance Marketplace, including becoming a Navigator or Certified Application Counselor organization online, here. If your organization is a community health center or other health care provider, hospital, a non-federal governmental or non-profit social service and your organization would like to help by training your staff to assist people applying for coverage through the Marketplace, you can apply to be a Certified application counselor (CAC) organization.