Letter to the Editor: Free Help Available for ACA Enrollment

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By Kyle Simon, Special to The Tampa Bay Times

Sunday’s report about the challenges consumers face enrolling in or renewing health coverage through Obamacare overlooked a critical type of assistance to help Floridians get covered.

I am one of about 150 certified navigators in Florida trained and able to help consumers, small businesses and their employees as they look for health coverage options during the open enrollment period. Free of charge, navigators can help people understand the cost of coverage, find out if they qualify for federal subsidies to reduce the cost of coverage, find out which plans and providers are available to them, and submit an application for health coverage.

Navigators are certified by the federal government after taking extensive training and licensed through the state of Florida after undergoing background checks. We must provide unbiased information about all the plan choices, and we are paid through a federal grant, not the insurance companies. Through Jan. 31, consumers can take advantage of free local assistance and meet with a navigator in their community by visiting CoveringFlorida.org or calling toll-free 1-877-813-9115

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