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Let Insurers Enroll, Senators Say

The Florida Channel
Leon County Judge John Cooper on June 30, 2022, in a screen grab from The Florida Channel.

Commercial health insurers could be an alternative to the balky if the White House grants a request from eight Democratic senators, including Florida Sen. Bill Nelson.  If the wish is granted, it could mean a huge influx of new customers for Florida Blue.

The senators’ letter asks the Obama administration to let insurance companies directly enroll customers in policies available on the health insurance exchange, Kaiser Health News reported.

Commercial insurers, especially those with retail stores, could benefit most from broadening the ways consumers can sign up for coverage. Florida Blue, the state’s largest insurer, already has 18 retail centers opened across the state, ready to help walk-in customers.

The letter to U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius asks that health plans and Internet insurance brokers get a direct-enrollment path that right now is limited only to the glitch-ridden website,

The White House is already testing ways to turn over more of the enrollment duty to insurers in three states,  including Florida. But there’s still the hang-up of determining whether customers qualify for subsidies – that still requires a trip to

The Senators want that barrier removed, the letter makes clear.

Originally founded in December 2006 as an independent grassroots publication dedicated to coverage of health issues in Florida, Health News Florida was acquired by WUSF Public Media in September 2012.