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Navigators called to Washington by congressional opponents of healthcare reform


@patriciaborns  Karen Egozi, CEO of the Epilepsy Foundation of Florida, has her work cut out to start bringing Florida's uninsured into the Affordable Care Act's healthcare exchange on Oct. 1. Since the Miami-based nonprofit won a navigator grant from the Dept. of Health and Human Services worth $637,000, Egozi and her staff has been certifying themselves on the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid online training program, and hiring 40 additional navigators, many of whom will be deployed in Miami-Dade. 

With less than four weeks to prepare for Oct. 1, Egozi must also navigate a speed bump placed in her path by congressional opponents of the healthcare law who sit on the House Energy and Commerce Committee. "I just got a letter asking for a multitude of documentation about our activities. It has to be presented in Washington on Sep. 13," said Egozi. "I've got to tell you, I'm completely apolitical, but this is slowing people down."

Egozi said the congressional committee also wants information about all contact her organization has had with Enroll America, a nonpartisan 501(c)(3) organization whose mission is to maximize the number of uninsured Americans who enroll in health coverage under the Affordable Care Act. Their line of inquiry follows that of Cause of Action, an activist group tied to Charles and David Koch, which claims that Blue Cross Blue Shield will gain financially from Enroll's activities because one of its executives sits on the board.   

Egozi expects to appear before the House Energy and Commerce Committee on Sep. 13.

For help understanding the Affordable Care Act or to sign up for the health exchange, Egozi's organization can be reached toll-free at 877-553-7453.



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