Organizations receiving federal funds to help Americans sign up for healthcare coverage on the state insurance exchanges are coming under pressure from House Republican lawmakers who are demanding that they provide extensive information by Sept. 13.
Critics say the request from the House Energy and Commerce Committee is an effort to intimidate the navigator groups and delay their work in the crucial run-up to the Oct. 1 launch of open enrollment on the exchanges.
In an Aug. 29 letter (PDF) to 51 organizations that will be hiring and training navigators in 11 states where the federal government will be running the exchanges, Republican members of the House Energy and Commerce Committee asked the groups to provide details of the work that will be done with the federal funds.
The GOP lawmakers want to know how much navigator staff will be paid, a description of the training navigators will undergo, what policies are in place to monitor their work, and whether the organization has been contacted by insurers, providers or any other entities. The committee also asked for copies of all communications between the navigator groups and any government agency about the grants. The letter says the committee wants the information “to better understand the work that you will perform as a Navigator and the consumer protections that will be in place before open enrollment begins.”