Policy Implications and Opportunities for Quality Improvement
The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) put in place reforms that improve access to quality, affordable health coverage. One of the provisions of the ACA was the creation of new Health Insurance Exchanges, or Marketplaces, to provide a one-stop-shop for Consumers to compare plans, apply for subsidies or public insurance, and enroll in health coverage. The ACA also required each Marketplace to fund a Navigator function to provide in-person outreach, education and enrollment assistance. In 2013, Seedco was awarded funding to lead Navigator consortia in 4 states, Georgia, Maryland, New York, and Tennessee, overseeing Navigator training and program implementation.
In light of the diverse environments in which it operated during the first ACA open enrollment period in 2013-2014, Seedco leadership commissioned an evaluation study to learn about barriers and facilitators to health insurance navigation. The study was conducted by researchers in the Department of Health Policy and Management in the College of Public Health at the University of Georgia.