December 6, 2013 |
WASHINGTON - Roughly 10% of the enrollment forms the federal health insurance website submits to insurance companies include errors, an administration official said Friday, claiming progress on fixing a critical piece of the troubled online marketplace. The error rate for the so-called 834 forms, which relay consumers' personal information to the insurance company they have selected, may have been as high as a quarter of all transactions in October and November, before a flurry of repairs to the HealthCare.gov website, said Julie Bataille, a spokeswoman for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.
December 3, 2013 |
Before noon Monday 375,000 Americans logged on to HealthCare.gov and discovered that, though the federal website is working far better than at its launch in October, it still runs into problems when demand gets too high. That is both the good news and the bad news for Republicans who are hoping to use Obamacare as their prime attack point in the 2014 congressional elections. For the GOP, continuing glitches in the online delivery system for the new national healthcare market reinforce the argument that the Obama administration has tried to do too much, too fast without really understanding the enormity of the job. That is the upside for Republicans.
December 1, 2013 |
WASHINGTON - Two months after its disastrous debut, the federal website for enrolling Americans in health insurance under President Obama's healthcare law has improved markedly, and many consumers are now likely to be able to use it to select insurance plans. Enrollment in health plans - the most important measure - has been accelerating. But the performance of the troubled HealthCare.gov website, which consumers in 36 states are supposed to be able to use to sign up for health coverage, still falls well short of basic standards for Internet-based commerce.
December 1, 2013 |
After a nasty storm ripped through the East Coast on the busiest travel day of the year, you might think that buying travel insurance for holiday travel would be a no-brainer. Not so much. The 114-year-old National Consumers League concluded recently that travel insurance is usually a bad deal because most policies are riddled with exceptions that allow insurance companies to reject claims for payoffs. Most insurance companies won't disclose their track record for paying out claims, making it nearly impossible to judge whether insurance is worth the money, the league says.
November 21, 2013
Re "Healthcare enrollment rises sharply," Nov. 19 Persuading young and healthy people to buy insurance shouldn't be so hard. They will, of course, need that healthcare when they are old, so perhaps they should be promised lower premiums in the future as a reward for paying into the system when they are young. When they're older, they'll be glad they had the foresight to be a little community-minded. As a society, there are some things for which it makes sense to pool resources to benefit all for the long term.
November 19, 2013 |
"We didn't do a good enough job in terms of how we crafted the law," an apologetic President Obama said this month, shortly after millions of Americans got notices from their health insurance companies that their current policies were going to be canceled because the policies didn't comply with the minimum standards of the Affordable Care Act. Worse, the federal website where people were supposed to be able to buy replacement coverage was still barely...
November 17, 2013 |
WASHINGTON -- Top congressional Democrats on Sunday stood by President Obama and the flawed rollout of the government's healthcare website, expressing confidence the problems would be fixed and the issue would not drag down the party in next year's mid-term elections. “I don't think you can tell what will happen next year, but I will tell you this -- Democrats stand tall in support of the Affordable Care Act,” House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-San Francisco) said on NBC's “Meet the Press.” Pelosi downplayed the defection of 39 House Democrats on Friday who voted to help pass a Republican bill, opposed by the White House, to address the millions of people facing cancellation of their health insurance policies.
November 16, 2013
Re "Obamacare's dismal stats," Editorial, Nov. 14 With federally fabricated smoke and mirrors, and with the persistent use of unintended consequences as excuses, Obamacare is truly a sinking ship. No amount of spin can save it now. We must look to reparation. The Times' editorial could have noted that many people who are leaving the individual insurance market or who are being dumped by their carriers have policies that conform to the Affordable Care Act. Health insurers have relentlessly increased the individual policy premiums to the point of being unaffordable.
November 14, 2013 |
WASHINGTON - President Obama's plan to help millions of consumers facing health insurance cancellations calmed Democrats on Capitol Hill on Thursday even as its practical effect appeared unclear. The decision could give some consumers who like their health plans the chance to keep them into 2015, allowing the president to say he honored his pledge that his health law would not force Americans to give up their coverage. "This fix won't solve every problem for every person," the president said in remarks at the White House, in which he took responsibility for the law's botched rollout.