• CNN: Obamacare a disaster that needs fixing

    As always, I didn’t write the title. But the rest of the thoughts over at CNN.com on the ongoing Obamacare website disaster are mine. Go read!


    • Not a criticism, but I think it important to let people know of the web site that allows window shopping. The range of choices and the prices are very positive developments – though I understand that the prices don’t include the subsidies, which could discourage those who do qualify for them. I must also mention two flaws. First, the range of choices, which can be very confusing for shoppers, isn’t an accident of fate – it’s the result of a combination of the administration’s decision not to adopt federal (uniform) standards and the insurers’ decision to engage in risk management (which, not coincidentally, was the reason why the administration didn’t adopt federal standards). Second, details about the plans are not available on the federal exchange; instead, the exchange has links to the insurers’ web sites, which, not surprisingly, are not models of disclosure or clarity. With so many plans in each category (with only marginal differences among them) and with questionable disclosure, both attributable to the insurers not the government, I’m not sure how that can be fixed.

      • Sadly the pricing on healthcare.gov is inaccurate. Only differentiates between two age groups – under and over 50.

        Why don’t they pay off the creator of valuepenguin.com for a portal that has pricing for all ages.

    • One thing that most articles fail to note is that healthcare.gov only covers the 26 states which opted to use the Federal system. The rest of the states (including California and New York, two of the largest states) have their own exchanges which don’t get much publicity. California’s exchange seems to be working well. You can “window shop” just by entering your zip code and the options are explained well.
      The Federal web site is typical of most large software projects, buggy, late, over budget. It will get fixed in time for those who want to enroll before the deadline.
      A rather good report on the healthcare.gov problems this am on NPR. They note that some of the problems were caused by the Republicans blocking funding for development of the web site leading to delays as HHS had to borrow money from other programs and cobble together a contract for development.