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Thousands Remain Uninsured Despite Paying Obamacare Premiums

Speaking on the floor this morning, Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell said, “Obamacare may not have existed in the English language just a few years ago. But in short order, it’s become a byword for broken promises and almost-cartoonish inefficiency. It’s no wonder why: ‘You can keep your plan.’ ‘You can keep your doctor.’ ‘Premiums will go down.’ ‘The law will create millions of jobs.’ We knew the promises wouldn’t hold up. Many of us said so. One even earned the dubious distinction of being declared the ‘Lie of Year.’ And that’s why it’s so hard to trust much of what the Obama Administration claims about Obamacare these days.”

 

The Wall Street Journal reports, “Months after the sign-up deadline, thousands of Americans who purchased health insurance through the Affordable Care Act still don’t have coverage due to problems in enrollment systems. In states including California, Nevada and Massachusetts, which are running their own online insurance exchanges, some consumers picked a private health plan and paid their premiums only to learn recently that they aren’t insured. Others received a policy but then got married, had a baby or another ‘life event’ that required their coverage to be updated, yet have been waiting months for the change to take effect. As a result, some of these people say they have put off medical treatments or paid out of pocket for health expenses. . . . Minnesota said it has a backlog of about 6,500 requests for changes due to a life event while Oregon reported about 8,200 such requests pending. In Nevada, about 150 people have joined a lawsuit seeking class-action status against that state’s exchange and Xerox Corp., which helped set up the marketplace. Thousands of residents remain uninsured despite paying premiums or completing all steps to enroll, according to the suit, filed in Clark County.”

 

The Journal details some of the stories of people in this situation: “Robert Rolain of Las Vegas, one of the plaintiffs, said that in October, he signed up his wife, Linda, using the state exchange for a Nevada Health Co-Op plan starting March 1. In November, a tumor was found on her brain, and doctors discussed surgery. Mr. Rolain paid $136 toward the first month’s premium, which was offset by a tax credit of $420, according to a copy of his statement and a receipt. Mr. Rolain said he was dumbfounded when he took his wife to an oncologist in March and learned she wasn’t covered. They postponed surgery for two months, he said, until they got notice that she was insured. . . . By then, Ms. Rolain’s survival prospects had diminished. She died June 30. . . . In Massachusetts, Dan Hoye signed up on the state exchange to obtain coverage through Tufts Health Plan for himself and his wife, Rosemarie. A copy of a bill from the exchange shows he was making his monthly premium payments of $646. When his daughter, Holly, was born April 26, he said he contacted the exchange to put her on their plan. But her coverage didn’t start until June 25, he said, almost two months later. He said he was shocked in early May when he got a call from his uncle, her pediatrician, informing him Holly wasn’t insured. ‘What if there was a medical emergency, what then?’ asked Mr. Hoye, 31, of Taunton, Mass.”

 

While some Americans who signed up and paid aren’t getting coverage, in Washington, DC, insurance brokers who signed people up aren’t getting paid. According to The Washington Post, “When the District launched its federally mandated health insurance exchange last fall, officials went to great lengths to woo professional insurance brokers — launching a special broker web portal, establishing a ‘concierge’ hotline just for brokers and holding broker-only training classes. Despite those efforts, many brokers have yet to be paid for the policies they’ve sold through the exchange, known as D.C. Health Link — generating frustration among professionals who say their patience in navigating the changes wrought by the Affordable Care Act has not been rewarded. ‘I’ve been very supportive, I put a lot of work into it, and I’ve gotten nothing,’ said Steve Nearman, a Virginia-based broker who says he has helped nearly 100 city residents find and buy insurance through the exchange and is owed thousands of dollars in commissions. The unpaid brokers represent an additional set of hiccups for D.C. Health Link, one of the many state exchanges established pursuant to the federal health-care overhaul. Under city law, with few exceptions, individuals and small businesses are required to buy their health coverage through the exchange, which is meant to foster transparency and competition. The District’s glitches have paled in comparison to those faced in Maryland and by the federal exchange, which is used in 36 states, including Virginia. But many District consumers have encountered problems using their hometown exchange. The Washington Post recently reported that some consumers have encountered significant delays in securing coverage because of apparent technology faults.”

 

Meanwhile, in Colorado, The Denver Post reports, “Colorado’s health-care exchange is expecting nearly twice as many people to drop or decline to pay for their policies, resulting in $1 million less in revenue this fiscal year. In April, the staff projected 13 percent of people will drop or not pay for policies in fiscal 2015, but now they are expecting about 24 percent to drop their policies, according to the latest model. Because Connect for Health Colorado collects a fee on every policy sold through the exchange, the new model expects revenue from that fee to drop from $7.9 million to $6.9 million this fiscal year. And in fiscal 2016, the revised figures show dropped policies going from the 16 percent projected in April to nearly 22 percent, with a nearly $740,000 drop in revenue. Exchange chief financial officer Cammie Blais said the staff is using the higher drop rate in more recent models because that is how national figures are tracking. . . . According to the revised estimates, Connect for Health expects 35,800 of its 152,200 individuals covered with exchange policies this fiscal year to drop coverage. Next year, it expects 37,400 of 175,000 to drop.”

 

As Leader McConnell said, “Many of us predicted that these kinds of problems would be the likely outcome of giving government such expansive power over such a huge segment of our economy. Of course you’re going to have massive inefficiency. And probable fraud. And migraines for middle-class families that already have enough to deal with. Of course you’re going to see all this. It seems inevitable. That’s why Republicans say we need to start over with actual health care reform – reform that can actually lower costs and increase the quality of care without resorting to this tired government-centric approach. Obamacare is built upon the intellectually lazy idea that we can simply legislate a desirable outcome into existence; that we can tell a hulking federal bureaucracy to simply bureaucratize affordable healthcare into being. Unfortunately, life doesn’t work that way. Reality always intervenes, just as we’ve been seeing with the pain of Obamacare these past few years — pain that will only continue until Washington Democrats join with us to enact a serious, bipartisan approach that actually addresses many of our health care challenges and dispenses with the failed policies of this Administration.”

About Tom White

Tom is a US Navy Veteran, owns an Insurance Agency and is currently an IT Manager for a Virginia Distributor. He has been published in American Thinker, currently writes for the Richmond Examiner as well as Virginia Right! Blog.Tom lives in Hanover County, Va and is involved in politics at every level and is a Recovering Republican who has finally had enough of the War on Conservatives in progress with the Leadership of the GOP on a National Level.

2 Responses to “Thousands Remain Uninsured Despite Paying Obamacare Premiums”

  1. Gene Lefty says:

    Tom, any word on the “detailed” health care plan of their own making, that the Republicans promised to have to us before the midterms?

    Why aren’t you worried about the 400,000 uninsured in Virginia? Their premiums were also going to be paid, by the federal government. But yet the grassroots would prefer to send the money to other states? The money is going to be printed , or created regardless, Virginia might as well have taken it .

    I expect that the Republicans will not really object to the Governor going it on his own. You see in my opinion the Republicans are for Obamacare.

    Sure, they will put up a fight to appease the base, or the grassroots, but nothing more than a façade to cover the truth.

    It will be very interesting come November 2016 when the Republican Presidential candidate will have to run on the promise, “I am going to take your healthcare away”?

    That will be very interesting.

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    Tom White Says:

    Nothing is more conservative than a republican wanting to get their majority back. And nothing is more liberal than a republican WITH a majority.

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