Marketplace Policy Claims Delays In Wash.; Troubled Exchanges Face Deadlines
The problems in Washington state have affected about 15 percent of the marketplace customers, the Seattle Times reports. Other outlets look at the tough choices some states with troubled exchanges are weighing, new enrollment numbers in Connecticut and another resignation in Oregon.
The Seattle Times: State Health Providers Call For Fixes, More Transparency From Health Exchanges
The Association of Washington Healthcare Plans – an alliance of licensed health maintenance organizations (HMO) and health care service contractors (HCSC) in Washington state – said Wednesday that problems with thousands of consumers' health claims have resulted in delays of service or in claims payments to an estimated 15 percent of enrollees in the state’s online insurance exchange (Marshall, 5/22).
The CT Mirror: Access Health CT Update: Younger People Bought Late; Calls Still Coming
Just over 80,018 state residents have private health insurance purchased through the state's health insurance exchange, Access Health CT, according to numbers presented Thursday. Another 7,000 Connecticut residents signed up for plans through the exchange but are no longer covered because they didn't pay their premiums. Open enrollment for private insurance plans sold by the exchange ended March 31, but people who qualify can still sign up for Medicaid, and so far, 149,013 people have (Becker, 5/22).
Modern Healthcare: States With Dysfunctional Exchanges Scramble To Fix Sites
States with dysfunctional insurance exchanges are running out of time to decide how to proceed for the 2015 open enrollment period. Less than six months remain until the next signup window opens. In recent weeks, a few states with the most troubled exchanges—Hawaii, Massachusetts, Maryland, Nevada and Oregon—have made decisions about how to move forward. Nevada's exchange has had so many problems that it drew a class-action lawsuit. Roughly 200 plaintiffs who thought they had signed up for coverage but were not actually enrolled are seeking damages. The state extended the open enrollment period through the end of May to allow residents who experience technical difficulties to sign up, but problems persist (Demko, 5/22).
The Oregonian: Another Top State Information-Technology Official, Steve Powell, Resigns In Wake Of Cover Oregon Fiasco
Yet another top state information-technology manager, Steve Powell, has submitted his resignation in the wake of the Cover Oregon health insurance exchange debacle. Powell, whose resignation takes effect June 5, was the top deputy to Carolyn Lawson, the former Chief Information Officer for the Oregon Health Authority and Department of Human Services. Both were hired from California, and commuted home to the Sacramento area on weekends. According to the state, he has found a different job, though details are not known (Budnick, 5/22).
And on state Medicaid issues -
The Arizona Republic: Arizona Families Lose Coverage, Pay More For Health Insurance
Chris Senn has a steady job, a supportive spouse and a loving family. What he doesn't have is health insurance for his three young daughters, ages 8, 10 and 12. The Mesa resident's daughters are among thousands of children who lost coverage at the end of January when Arizona largely phased out its KidsCare health-insurance program for low- and moderate-income families. About 26,000 children were transferred to the state's Medicaid program, but 14,000 others were expected to buy subsidized health insurance in the Affordable Care Act's federal marketplace. More than 2,000 children can keep their KidsCare coverage until they turn 19 or their families' economic circumstances change. Neither Medicaid nor the marketplace is an option for the Senn children (Alltucker, 5/22).
Salt Lake City Tribune: Poll: Utah Voters Favor Expanding Medicaid
In deferring a decision about whether to expand Medicaid, Utah’s Republican legislative leaders may risk the ire of voters. Most voters — 76 percent — support using federal funds to cover the full expansion group, 111,000 poor and uninsured, according to a Brigham Young University poll (Stewart, 5/22).