By Allison Bell
The Nebraska Department of Insurance has posted a copy of the official Health Insurance Marketplace Navigator SOP Manual
on its website.
CMS developed the SOP manual to describe the "standard operating procedures" for the navigators helping consumers and small business owners use the federally run exchanges.
The navigators are supposed to be independent exchange ombudsmen, and not allowed to sell coverage or recommend specific plans.
The manual covers topics such as helping consumers who forget their exchange account passwords, helping consumers with the eligibility determination process, and helping consumers renew their coverage.
In a section on greeting exchange users, CMS tells navigators to "assure customers that you are unaffiliated with any insurance providers, and neutral and that you will not influence consumers' health coverage decisions."
In a section on assessing consumers' level of understanding of the exchange system, CMS suggests asking questions such as, "What are your questions about the new health care law?" and "What is important to you when it comes to health coverage?"