KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

California Exchange Draws Strong Interest, While Hawaii’s Finally Opens

Media outlets report on the progress of state-run exchanges, ranging from the nearly 100,000 application starts in California, to Hawaii's two weeks-delayed launch, to Oregon officials' concern about sites using sound-alike names.

Los Angeles Times: California Insurance Exchange Reports 94,500 Application Starts
After two weeks of open enrollment, Californians have started nearly 95,000 applications for health insurance through the state's new exchange. Covered California, the state marketplace, announced the latest figures Tuesday and it said consumer interest in the federal healthcare law remains strong (Terhune, 10/15).

The Associated Press: Hawaii Insurance Marketplace Launches With Plans
Hawaii's health insurance marketplace under President Barack Obama's federal health care overhaul began offering plans for sale on Tuesday, more than two weeks after the start of open enrollment. Hawaii Health Connector Executive Director Coral Andrews said at a news conference that consumers can now review and buy plans offered on the exchange's website (Garcia, 10/15).

The Oregonian: Cover Oregon; Insurance Agents Set Up Sound-Alike Sites, But Some Raise Concerns
Insurance agents are taking advantage of internet searches for the state's new health marketplace, even using sound-alike website names like Cover Oregon Plan, Cover Oregon Now and Oregon Health Exchange. But consumers need to make sure their agent is certified, and should know that only the state's official website -- can offer tax credits and other savings, says Cover Oregon spokesman Michael Cox. So far, officials have contacted three websites about potentially misleading language on their sites, two of them sites with similar names to Cover Oregon or its earlier name, the Oregon Health Insurance Exchange (Budnick, 10/15).

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