KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

State Marketplaces Have Some Different Issues Than The Federal Health Website

California officials worry that highly publicized problems of the federal website will scare customers away from the state marketplace, which is open for business. Meanwhile, news outlets look at issues in New York, Connecticut, Texas and Minnesota.

Los Angeles Times: Q&A: Don't Confuse California Obamacare Exchange With U.S. One, Exec Says
Despite fixing many of its own technical glitches, California's health insurance exchange is worried that consumers may still be confused by high-profile enrollment problems through a federal website. Peter Lee, executive director of Covered California, said the state exchange is adjusting its marketing to address this concern and to ensure that people know it's open for business (Terhune, 10/29).

The New York Times: Errors Rife In New York State's List Of Health Insurance Assistance Sites
Computer issues are not the only problem plaguing the rollout of the Affordable Care Act. A 228-page list of navigators -- businesses and organizations that help people sign up for coverage -- on New York State's health exchange website has turned out to be littered with places whose owners and employees have no clue how to offer health insurance advice (Hartocollis, 10/29).

The CT Mirror: Connecticut Health Exchange 'Backup Plan' To Help During National Outage
A backup plan Connecticut's health exchange developed to help insulate it from Washington's problems in the rollout of Obamacare was no help at all Sunday, when the federal system that checks information from applicants went down, stalling most enrollments. "There are some things that still have to be worked through, some technical problems," said Jason Madrak, chief marketing officer for Access Health CT, Connecticut's health care exchange (Radelat, 10/29).

The Texas Tribune: Animation: Explaining The Health Insurance Marketplace
The online health insurance marketplace that the federal government launched on Oct. 1 offers dozens of health plans and tax credits. Some consumers have found the application process confusing and technically frustrating. This Tribune animation explains how the marketplace works, and whom it's designed to help (Wiseman and Aaronson, 10/30).

The Star Tribune: Insurance Shoppers Find MNsure Prices, Choices, Vary Widely By Area
Despite the promises of choice and affordability offered by the federal health care overhaul, many Minnesotans outside the Twin Cities area aren't seeing much of either. In certain pockets of the state, shoppers on the new MNsure website have just a handful of insurance companies to choose from and face much higher premiums than those available in the metro area (Crosby, 10/30).

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