Designing Consumer Assistance Programs

This issue brief outlines major state decisions regarding coverage expansion consumer assistance strategies and lists valuable tools that state officials can use when determining how to meet the needs of new and existing consumers. The appendix includes links to resources developed to help state officials design consumer assistance programs. The brief covers four major methods states are considering to provide consumer assistance.

  1. Outreach and engagement through marketing and advertising;
  2. Enrollment assistance through navigators and in-person assisters;
  3. Engagement of insurance producers (inclusive of both agent and brokers); and,
  4. Individualized support through call centers and other communications.

The resources and state examples presented in this brief represent only a portion of the material available to states looking for examples of best practices and the latest thinking on consumer assistance. In the coming months, the State Health Reform Assistance Network (State Network) will release more detailed briefs on specific consumer assistance topics including navigators and call centers.