When HealthCare.gov and some state-run insurance marketplaces ran into trouble with their Web sites in October and November, they urged consumers to submit paper applications.
Now, ProPublica's Charles Ornstein reports , it's time to process all that paper. And with the deadline to enroll in health plans less than two weeks away, there's growing concern that some of these applications won't be processed in time.
Some key points compiled from reporting around the nation:
- After a conference call earlier this week with federal health officials, Illinois health officials sent a memo Thursday to their roughly 1,600 navigators saying there is no way to complete enrollment through a paper application.
- Covered California in recent days disclosed that it had a backlog of 25,000 paper applications that had to be processed before the Dec. 23 deadline to sign up for coverage that begins Jan. 1.
- In Oregon, a state official disclosed this week that more than 30,000 people who submitted health insurance applications still don't have enrollmentpackets
- In Maryland, another state whose exchange has been plagued by difficulties, 8,500 paper applications were pending as of last week.
- In Vermont, there is a backlog of 1,210 applications, some dating back to as early as Oct. 30.
It does not look good for a smooth transition to a January 1 startup date. Even for those who have enrolled there have been no reports as to who has received premium billings. That is the bottom line......no $$ no insurance. Perhaps our government should automatically pay the premiums for the first 90 days to make up for their negligence, and not really giving a damn if this works.
The full story is available here: http://www.propublica.org/article/the-obamacare-paper-pileup