Oregon Opts For Federal Exchange
The board overseeing Oregon's nonfunctional health insurance exchange unanimously approved the Obama administration’s plan Friday to take over the marketplace, making Oregon the first state to drop its enrollment website for healthcare.gov. The Oregonian reports that a task force also recommended the state shelve another Oracle-led project to 'revolutionize' information technology for its health services department.
Los Angeles Times: Oregon Scraps State Health Insurance Exchange
Oregon officials voted unanimously Friday to jettison the state's disastrous health insurance exchange and switch to the federal system, admitting disappointment and defeat in an arena where the state had been a trailblazer (La Ganga, 4/25).
The Wall Street Journal: Oregon To Use Healthcare.gov Technology For State Insurance Exchange
An Oregon state board unanimously agreed to a plan Friday to use the federal government's technology to run the state's health insurance exchange. The board overseeing the state's Cover Oregon health insurance exchange adopted a staff recommendation to use the technology behind the federal government's HealthCare.gov website. Gov. John Kitzhaber, a Democrat, has said he supports the decision (Corbett Dooren, 4/25).
The Washington Post: Cover Oregon Officially Admits Enrollment Site Is Broken Beyond Repair
The Oregon board overseeing the state’s deeply flawed health insurance exchange unanimously approved the Obama administration’s plan Friday to take over the marketplace, making Oregon the first state to drop its enrollment Web site for HealthCare.gov. Directors of the exchange, Cover Oregon, voted Friday to drop its enrollment Web site, which hadn’t fully recovered from a failed launch Oct. 1. Oregon, which was awarded $305 million in federal grants to build the exchange, remains the only state not allowing full online enrollment in Affordable Care Act health plans (Millman, 4/25).
Kaiser Health News: Capsules: Oregon Raises White Flag Over Its Health Exchange
Oregon has been “all in” on health reform. Its embrace of the Affordable Care Act includes a very successful Medicaid expansion, a $2 billion federal experiment to show the state can save money by managing patients’ care better, and, of course, the state’s own online marketplace to sell Obamacare insurance. But that last point has been a huge problem. The Cover Oregon board decided on Friday to ditch its troubled website and join up with the federal Healthcare.gov exchange instead (Foden-Vencil, 4/28).
The Oregonian: With Cover Oregon Switching To Federal Health Exchange, State May Scrap Second, $71-Million Oracle Project
Oregon's pending divorce from Oracle Corp. is messier than it seems. On Friday, the Cover Oregon board voted to scrap the state's nearly $250 million non-functional health insurance exchange, for which Oracle was the lead vendor. Now The Oregonian has learned that an internal task force has recommended the state shelve -- perhaps permanently -- another Oracle-led project that was intended to revolutionize information-technology and enrollment for the Department of Health Services (Budnick, 4/25).
The Oregonian: Lawmakers React To Cover Oregon Decision To Switch To Federal Health Exchange
It didn't take long for Oregon's political leaders to react to Friday's decision by Cover Oregon officials to switch to the federal health exchange. The problem-plagued exchange has cost $248 million so far and its website still doesn't fully function. Cover Oregon officials decided it's time for the state to cut its losses and switch to the federal exchange in hopes of ensuring something functional when the next open enrollment period begins in November. Senate President Peter Courtney, D-Salem, and House Speaker Tina Kotek, D-Portland, said the Joint Committee on Legislature Audits, Information Management and Technology will hold a May 6 meeting to review the decision, learn more about the transition and attempt to ensure a site is ready by open enrollment (Zheng, 4/25).
The Fiscal Times: Millions Wasted On Broken Obamacare State Websites
The state of Oregon finally decided on Friday to abandon its disastrous exchange website after spending at least $250 million in federal tax dollars and enduring six excruciating months of severe technical glitches that kept people from signing up for health insurance online. (The Medicaid portion will move to the Oregon Health Plan.) Now, the state, which has spent most of the $305 million it was allocated in federal dollars, will use an additional $5 million to switch over to the federal portal, HealthCare.gov. At a press conference Friday, Alex Pettit, Oregon’s chief information officer, called the switch the “lowest risk option,” since officials in Oregon already know the federal site works better than theirs (which doesn’t work at all). Scrapping the state site, however, is much more affordable than the alternative. Officials at Cover Oregon, the state exchange, estimated that even attempting to salvage the state’s website would cost at least an additional $75 million (Ehley, 4/27).