Some State Insurance Exchanges Suffer Their Own Tech Troubles

Other issues — including plan-cancellation notices — add to the problems states face.

PANORAMA CITY, CA - JANUARY 28: Dr. Jason Greenspan (L) and emergency room nurse Junizar Manansala care for a patient in the ER of Mission Community Hospital where doctors held a press conference outside on a class action lawsuit against the state of California by a coalition of emergency room physicians claiming that without additional funding, the entire emergency healthcare system is on the verge of collapse on January 28, 2009 in Panorama City, California. According to the coalition, the cost of providing emergency room treatment has nearly doubled over the past decade and patient load increased by more than 28 percent while Medi-Cal reimbursements have remained largely unchanged. During that time, 85 California hospitals in California have closed and an additional 55 facilities have shut down their emergency rooms. California now reportedly ranks worst in the nation for access emergency care and last in emergency rooms per capita. California has seven emergency rooms per million people while the national average is 20 emergency rooms per million people. 
National Journal
Clara Ritger
Add to Briefcase
Clara Ritger
Nov. 12, 2013, 1:51 a.m.

The Health and Hu­man Ser­vices De­part­ment has come un­der fire for the botched rol­lout of Health­Care.gov, but in some states, the trouble with Obama­care sign-ups is worse.

Ore­gon has yet to make its web­site fully func­tion­al and has been dir­ect­ing po­ten­tial ap­plic­ants to pa­per ap­plic­a­tions and in-per­son as­sisters.

Mary­land an­nounced Fri­day it would delay un­til April the open­ing of the small-busi­ness ex­change.

And Cali­for­nia’s web­site had prob­lems with doc­tor in­form­a­tion and is just now be­gin­ning to send en­roll­ment data to in­surers.

An­them Blue Cross is the second in­surer in Cali­for­nia to an­nounce it will ex­tend the can­celed policies in­to the new year. The com­pany is giv­ing 104,000 con­sumers un­til the end of Feb­ru­ary to choose a new health-in­sur­ance plan that is com­pli­ant with Af­ford­able Care Act cov­er­age reg­u­la­tions.

Both Blue Shield of Cali­for­nia — the first Golden State in­surer to delay can­cel­la­tions — and An­them Blue Cross were re­quired to ex­tend cov­er­age in­to the next year be­cause they did not give poli­cy­hold­ers enough no­tice, ac­cord­ing to the Cali­for­nia In­sur­ance De­part­ment.

Even in Wash­ing­ton state, where en­roll­ment, es­pe­cially in Medi­caid, has been high, ap­prox­im­ately 8,000 con­sumers will re­ceive no­tices in the mail that the price they’re ex­pect­ing to pay for health cov­er­age on the ex­change was quoted in­cor­rectly.

The state’s ex­change site was send­ing monthly in­come, not an­nu­al, to the data hub for veri­fic­a­tion and sub­sidy ap­prov­al.

The cal­cu­la­tion er­ror was iden­ti­fied by mid-Oc­to­ber and will af­fect people who signed up for in­sur­ance dur­ing the first three weeks of the ex­change’s Oct. 1 launch.

What We're Following See More »
STAKES ARE HIGH
Debate Could Sway One-Third of Voters
5 hours ago
THE LATEST

"A new Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll found that 34% of registered voters think the three presidential debates would be extremely or quite important in helping them decide whom to support for president. About 11% of voters are considered 'debate persuadables'—that is, they think the debates are important and are either third-party voters or only loosely committed to either major-party candidate."

Source:
YOU DON’T BRING ME FLOWERS ANYMORE
Gennifer Flowers May Not Appear After All
5 hours ago
THE LATEST

Will he or won't he? That's the question surrounding Donald Trump and his on-again, off-again threats to bring onetime Bill Clinton paramour Gennifer Flowers to the debate as his guest. An assistant to flowers initially said she'd be there, but Trump campaign chief Kellyanne Conway "said on ABC’s 'This Week' that the Trump campaign had not invited Flowers to the debate, but she didn’t rule out the possibility of Flowers being in the audience."

Source:
HAS BEEN OFF OF NEWSCASTS FOR A WEEK
For First Debate, Holt Called on NBC Experts for Prep
5 hours ago
THE DETAILS

NBC's Lester Holt hasn't hosted the "Nightly News" since Tuesday, as he's prepped for moderating the first presidential debate tonight—and the first of his career. He's called on a host of NBC talent to help him, namely NBC News and MSNBC chairman Andy Lack; NBC News president Deborah Turness; the news division's senior vice president of editorial, Janelle Rodriguez; "Nightly News" producer Sam Singal, "Meet the Press" host Chuck Todd, senior political editor Mark Murray and political editor Carrie Dann. But during the debate itself, the only person in Holt's earpiece will be longtime debate producer Marty Slutsky.

Source:
WHITE HOUSE PROMISES VETO
House Votes to Bar Cash Payments to Iran
6 hours ago
THE DETAILS

"The House passed legislation late Thursday that would prohibit the federal government from making any cash payments to Iran, in protest of President Obama's recently discovered decision to pay Iran $1.7 billion in cash in January. And while the White House has said Obama would veto the bill, 16 Democrats joined with Republicans to pass the measure, 254-163."

Source:
NO SURPRISE
Trump Eschewing Briefing Materials in Debate Prep
6 hours ago
THE DETAILS

In contrast to Hillary Clinton's meticulous debate practice sessions, Donald Trump "is largely shun­ning tra­di­tion­al de­bate pre­par­a­tions, but has been watch­ing video of…Clin­ton’s best and worst de­bate mo­ments, look­ing for her vul­ner­ab­il­it­ies.” Trump “has paid only curs­ory at­ten­tion to brief­ing ma­ter­i­als. He has re­fused to use lecterns in mock de­bate ses­sions des­pite the ur­ging of his ad­visers. He prefers spit­balling ideas with his team rather than hon­ing them in­to crisp, two-minute an­swers.”

Source:
×