As part of Health Reform, we’re going to have millions of people who are new to healthcare and will need a lot of help in figuring out what to do. With that, the government is creating thousands of navigators to help.
The question is who will these “navigators”, “assisters”, and “counselors” be. Some will work for the government. Some will work for non-profits, but I was surprised to see CVS Caremark jump into this space. It makes a ton of sense. Certainly, many of these people are going to pharmacies for OTCs or paying cash for some medications, and we certainly saw opportunities in the early Medicare Part D days where there were opportunities for the retail pharmacies to help consumers.
Their survey says 74% of people are familiar with the ACA (i.e., Health Reform). While that might be true, the Kaiser Family Foundation research shows that only 12% of the uninsured know something (or more) about health exchanges. That means there is a huge effort needed in a very short time frame.