This week, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) made some important announcements regarding agent and broker training for the federal exchange, both affecting this year and the 2016 open enrolment season. Regarding brokers who were certified for the 2015 plan year, CMS wants you to know that beginning on June 15, 2015, the 2014-2015 federally facilitated marketplace (FFM) agent and broker training and training curriculum completion certificates will no longer be available on the Medicare Learning Network® (MLN) Learning Management System (LMS) as CMS prepares to launch the training for the upcoming 2016 plan year to be available later this summer. At this point, you should not sign up for a new 2015 plan year training curriculum. If you plan to complete any of the 2014-2015 agent and broker training curricula (or print any certificates) and have not yet done so, CMS recommends completing this training prior to June 10, 2015. Please note that completion of the current year’s training curricula (2014-2015 training) does not count towards the 2016 plan year registration process.
In order to access the curriculum certificates, login to the MLN at: https://marketplace.medicarelearningnetworklms.com/. You will be taken to the “Training Home” page. Click “Transcript” on the blue task bar under the Health Insurance Marketplace logo. Click on the “Curriculums” view under the blue task bar. Click on “View Certificate” under the “Action” column to see your completed curriculum certificates. You will need to provide copies of these curriculum certificates to the health insurance issuers and web-brokers with whom you are affiliated. In addition, if you wish to update your contact information displayed on Find Local Help, please make the appropriate updates to your MLN profile information no later than June 14, 2015.
You must complete certain registration activities initially and annually in order to participate in the FFM. For the 2016 plan year, the new Marketplace Learning Management System (MLMS) (URL Pending) will replace the MLN for FFM-related agent and broker training activities. You will use your FFM user ID to login to the CMS Enterprise Portal to complete FFM training, exams and agreements in the new MLMS. The identity proofing screens (if you have not yet completed identity proofing for the FFM) will also be accessed through the CMS Enterprise Portal. At this time, training is not yet available for the 2016 plan year. CMS will notify all agents and brokers when they can begin taking the2016 plan year training.
Speaking of the year ahead, CMS has an exciting development regarding just broker training for 2016. In response to a long-standing NAHU request, CMS has announced that for 2016 on forward in the broker training system ONLY that agents and brokers will now be able to enter both their agent NPN and agency NPN when completing the certification process. This means you will not have to duplicate their efforts and complete the certification separately for each NPN including having someone in your agency draw the short straw and complete the agency NPN used for payment purposes. Unfortunately, this ability to add the agency NPN as well as the individual NPN has not yet been added to the actual exchange application online system, so for payment purposes you can still only enter in one number (the NPN of the agency or owner or other individual to whom the payment should flow). But at least CMS clearly understands the need to record multiple numbers and has made improvements in one of their systems!