Thursday, October 17, 2013

Legislator to file bill requiring ACA navigators to be checked and licensed

The Lawrence Journal-World

TOPEKA, KAN. — The chairwoman of the Senate Public Health and Welfare Committee today said she will introduce legislation to require background checks and licensing of Affordable Care Act navigators in Kansas.

State Sen. Mary Pilcher-Cook, R-Shawnee, said she is filing the legislation because of reports "calling into question the background and integrity of an individual responsible for enrolling Kansans in Obamacare."

Pilcher-Cook did not return a telephone call seeking comment.

In recent days, conservative websites have been critical of Rosilyn Wells, of Lawrence, who helps consumers enroll in the health insurance marketplace under the ACA, often called Obamacare.

Wells has had a bench warrant out of Shawnee County for an unpaid civil court judgment. She also filed for bankruptcy in 2003 and had another small claims judgment against her in 2007.

Jon Stewart, chief executive officer of Heartland Community Health Center, said Wells' legal problems were largely the result of medical debt. Now, he noted, she is trying to help others avoid medical debt by assisting them in signing up for health insurance.