Program helping uninsured Texans, government offering millions
Tyler, Texas (KETK) — October marks the deadline for uninsured Texans to apply for health insurance and with Obamacare changes approaching the federal government has hired 'Navigators' to help people buy health insurance.
Eight organizations in East Texas will receive funds to help people enroll in an insurance plan.
"They come up with these wonderful ideas yet they obligate us the American people to pay for it," says Criss Sudduth, President & Insurance Agent at Ark Assurance in Tyler.
More than 67- million dollars in grants will be awarded in the U.S. to help people enroll in health plans offered through the Affordable Health Care Act.
Health and Human Services Department says, the funds will be used to train and hire navigators to get the uninsured on board before January 1st.
It's reported, United Way in North Texas will receive close to a 6-million dollar grant and they will use the money to help East Texas organizations.
Ketk spoke to East Texas insurance agents from Ark Assurance say it's not a good idea.
"We got finger-printed we got background-checks ran us we have to carry errors and admissions coverage with us incase we make a major mistake just to make sure everyone is protected and with the navigators most of this stuff doesn't happen," says Craig Smith, Insurance Agent at Ark Assurance in Tyler.
"From what we understand anyone can be a navigator there's no specific background or anything else required all you have to do is apply take a course and past a test and you're a navigator," says Sudduth.
All they need is a 20 to 30 hour online course.
"The public is also going to suffer because I don't think they're going to have those navigators well educated and well trained as much as an insurance agent," says Jana McJunkins, Insurance Agent at Ark Assurance in Tyler.
We're told more than 2-million uninsured Texans will be eligible for a tax break to help them get health insurance.