Obamacare: Insurance brokers help consumers understand their healthcare choices

CHANDLER, AZ - Insurance broker Shelly Winson with True Choice Benefits has been busy meeting with hundreds of clients including Catalyst Computer Technology owner Steve Jaramillo.

His small business in Chandler is one of many now wrangling over whether to continue with private insurance or go with choices offered under Obamacare or the Affordable Care Act.

"I've got my own business to run. I don't have time to research all the details of the plan. So I need Shelley to help me out," said Jaramillo.

While the computer expert knows technology, sifting through the multitudes of private healthcare plans and the plans offered under "Obamacare" is confusing to say the least.

"As a small business owner I have to look at Obamacare to make sure I'm still able to offer my employees the best benefits for them," explained Jaramillo.

"The changes that are coming with the marketplace and the new mandates and benefit plans for 2014 are changing everything in the insurance field. It's very confusing for people," said Winson.

Winson not only helps business owners, but individually insured families as well.

And unlike the federally employed navigators, Winson can help steer clients through both private insurance plans and the federal program to make sure you are saving with the best plan.

"I've spent hundreds of hours training since this law was passed to be able to help people knowledgably. So we can actually give reliable guidance as opposed to just helping someone use the website," explains Winson.

That's something Jaramillo is banking his healthcare options on, as he compares both private insurance plans to Obamacare.    

"We want to take care of our employees and make sure their well-being is first and foremost."

Winson tells ABC15, whether you use a broker, navigator or dare to understand it on your own, it's important to take your time. What you choose now, you'll be stuck with for the next year.

Plus she explains, it doesn't matter if you sign up now or on December 15, the plans go into effect on the same day, January 1, 2014.

Even better, her services are free to you. Winson's commission comes from the insurance carrier.

If you choose to go through a broker, Winson advises to use only licensed professional brokers. 

You can find brokers through the National Association of Health Underwriters, or you can contact Winson on the True Choice Benefits website.

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