Health Insurance Exchange Open But Not Working

3 years 8 months 3 weeks ago Monday, November 25 2013 Nov 25, 2013 Monday, November 25, 2013 4:09:00 PM CST November 25, 2013 in News
By: Paige Hornor, KOMU 8, Reporter
loading

COLUMBIA - Missouri's Health Exchange website is preventing buyers from signing up for health insurance. Since the marketplace opened October 1st, it's continually crashed and has not been able to handle traffic.

Missouri's exchange is operated by the federal government so state government cannot provide much help. A spokesperson for the Missouri Hospital Association says it's one reason Missouri's exchange is not working.

"Other states that have chosen to do their own exchanges generally are easier to sign up on," Dave Dillon said. "Missouri is probably more difficult through that federal exchange because we made a decision not to create an exchange and we specifically prohibited the state from getting involved in that process so other states are probably seeing a little less pain when it comes to getting enrolled."

An insurance broker in Columbia says he's telling his clients to wait to sign up.

"Until they get the website up and running, we can't do anything about it. It's like a company that isn't ready to go into business, the sales force can't do anything until they go into business or they are up and running," Collin McCarty said.

McCarty said security risks are another reason he's not enrolling his clients yet. The Associated Press released details of a government memo that contained concerns about a "high security risk" for the health insurance website, at the end of October.

People running into problems with the website can turn to navigators for help. Navigators and insurance counselors are certified individuals hired to provide assistance to those looking and signing up for insurance. One navigator tells KOMU she's received calls from people being unable to sign up online.

But Robin Corderman runs in to many of the same problems people have at home. Error messages such as, "your account is temporarily unavailable" or "the system is unavailable" pop up.

"I think part of the problem with navigators is they are there to build that information for people and for groups and when the site isn't there to complete the transaction it becomes problematic for them because they have to use the same resources as an individual would and walk them through it," Dillon said.

"What we are doing is at this point, we call the 800 number and it takes about 20 or 30 minutes," Corderman said.

Three or four weeks after the phone call, the customer will be notified that their application is finished. Then, you can enroll in a plan. Corderman says Primaris has assisted over 700 Missourians since October.

"The website is working much smoother. Still glitches, but it improves every week and we've had several successful enrollments." Corderman said.

Marilyn Tavenner, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services administrator, apologized for the website's glitches in a U.S. House hearing on October 29th and said it will be fixed.

According to an article by the Associated Press, officials say the website should be able to handle the year-end flood of customers.

Despite the website's glitches, Dillon says it is important to start looking at options now.

"We are still encouraging people to do what they can to investigate what resources are available to them, what policies they might be eligible for," Dillon said.

Some resources are the Kaiser Foundation, Enroll Missouri and Cover Missouri. All of the sites will help estimate your plan and give you information, but they do not get you signed up.

To sign up, a navigator, insurance company, insurance broker or hospital can help fill out an application. You can also print a paper application from healthcare.gov and mail it or call 1-800-318-2596.

"I think it's better to do something to get as far as you can to get that application in the pipeline so in a few weeks you might know your tax credits." Corderman said. "If you can research the plans that you want, you can really move forward once you get the eligibility letter."

According to a report released by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 751 Missourians signed up for insurance plans through the marketplace in October.

The deadline to enroll for an insurance plan that begins January 1st is December 23rd. However, enrollment is open until March 31st. After then, you will face fines from the Internal Revenue Service.

Related Stories

More News

Grid
List
ST. LOUIS (AP) — The American Civil Liberties Union alleges in a lawsuit that a suburban St. Louis police department... More >>
6 minutes ago Thursday, August 17 2017 Aug 17, 2017 Thursday, August 17, 2017 8:25:00 AM CDT August 17, 2017 in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — A 19-year-old man has been acquitted of killing and attempting to rob a suburban St. Louis... More >>
13 minutes ago Thursday, August 17 2017 Aug 17, 2017 Thursday, August 17, 2017 8:18:00 AM CDT August 17, 2017 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - About 300 incoming freshmen at Lincoln University will be busy doing community service around town Thursday morning.... More >>
14 minutes ago Thursday, August 17 2017 Aug 17, 2017 Thursday, August 17, 2017 8:17:00 AM CDT August 17, 2017 in News
CLAYTON, Mo. (AP) — A Missouri man has been sentenced to 30 years in prison for fatally beating his uncle... More >>
18 minutes ago Thursday, August 17 2017 Aug 17, 2017 Thursday, August 17, 2017 8:13:00 AM CDT August 17, 2017 in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — Authorities say one woman is dead and three men are hurt after people in a car... More >>
22 minutes ago Thursday, August 17 2017 Aug 17, 2017 Thursday, August 17, 2017 8:08:39 AM CDT August 17, 2017 in News
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — A California woman awaits sentencing and a New Hampshire man is prison-bound for their roles... More >>
29 minutes ago Thursday, August 17 2017 Aug 17, 2017 Thursday, August 17, 2017 8:02:00 AM CDT August 17, 2017 in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — A St. Louis man has been ordered to spend four and a half years in federal... More >>
35 minutes ago Thursday, August 17 2017 Aug 17, 2017 Thursday, August 17, 2017 7:56:00 AM CDT August 17, 2017 in News
BELTON, Mo. (AP) — Authorities say human remains found in April in rural northwest Missouri are those of a 17-year-old... More >>
40 minutes ago Thursday, August 17 2017 Aug 17, 2017 Thursday, August 17, 2017 7:51:00 AM CDT August 17, 2017 in News
FORSYTH, Mo. (AP) — A man accused of killing a 6-year-old girl in Branson is closer to trial. A... More >>
47 minutes ago Thursday, August 17 2017 Aug 17, 2017 Thursday, August 17, 2017 7:44:00 AM CDT August 17, 2017 in News
BRANSON, Mo. (AP) — Administrators of the Silver Dollar City theme park in southwestern Missouri say a new roller coaster... More >>
51 minutes ago Thursday, August 17 2017 Aug 17, 2017 Thursday, August 17, 2017 7:40:00 AM CDT August 17, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - KOMU 8 News sat down Wednesday with University of Missouri political science professor Cooper Drury to get an... More >>
11 hours ago Wednesday, August 16 2017 Aug 16, 2017 Wednesday, August 16, 2017 8:36:00 PM CDT August 16, 2017 in News
SEDALIA - The total solar eclipse will attract huge crowds to mid-Missouri, but the last time there was a massive... More >>
12 hours ago Wednesday, August 16 2017 Aug 16, 2017 Wednesday, August 16, 2017 7:35:00 PM CDT August 16, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - Police released the results of an autopsy investigation following the death of a 4-year-old boy in May, ruling... More >>
16 hours ago Wednesday, August 16 2017 Aug 16, 2017 Wednesday, August 16, 2017 4:15:00 PM CDT August 16, 2017 in Continuous News
COLUMBIA - Local healthcare providers and state representatives met at a town hall Wednesday to discuss fallout from Gov. Eric... More >>
16 hours ago Wednesday, August 16 2017 Aug 16, 2017 Wednesday, August 16, 2017 3:58:00 PM CDT August 16, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA – Ameren Missouri looked to educate the Columbia Fire Department about natural gas and how to find signs of... More >>
17 hours ago Wednesday, August 16 2017 Aug 16, 2017 Wednesday, August 16, 2017 3:18:00 PM CDT August 16, 2017 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Federal prosecutors announced Wednesday a Columbia man pleaded guilty for his role in a plan to smuggle... More >>
17 hours ago Wednesday, August 16 2017 Aug 16, 2017 Wednesday, August 16, 2017 3:10:40 PM CDT August 16, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - Several of Missouri's legislators responded Wednesday to the violence from Charlottesville over the weekend. KOMU 8 News... More >>
19 hours ago Wednesday, August 16 2017 Aug 16, 2017 Wednesday, August 16, 2017 1:24:00 PM CDT August 16, 2017 in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — The nation's largest pharmacy benefit manager will soon limit the number and strength of opioid... More >>
19 hours ago Wednesday, August 16 2017 Aug 16, 2017 Wednesday, August 16, 2017 1:15:51 PM CDT August 16, 2017 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 69°
9am 72°
10am 74°
11am 77°
12pm 80°

Select a station to view its upcoming schedule:

Coming Up Next

7:00a
Today
11:00a
Rachael Ray
12:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Noon
8:00a
The Steve Wilkos Show
9:00a
The Steve Wilkos Show
10:00a
Jerry Springer

Tonight's Schedule

7:00p
The Wall
8:00p
Saturday Night Live
8:30p
Great News
9:00p
The Night Shift
7:00p
Penn & Teller: Fool Us
8:00p
Whose Line Is It Anyway?
8:30p
Whose Line Is It Anyway?
9:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Nine on The CW
9:30p
Seinfeld