HHS makes changes to Obamacare home page
By: Joanne Kenen
October 20, 2013 10:59 PM EDT
Health and Human Services officials announced Sunday that consumer-friendly changes have been made to the homepage of the troubled Obamacare enrollment website.
The changes to the homepage aim to relieve some user frustration — but it isn’t a wider fix to the buggy and crash-plagued signup system.
HHS officials earlier in the day announced separately that they were drawing on the “best and the brightest” tech experts inside and outside of government to try to repair Healthcare.gov’s flaws.
The changes will give people more information and options up front without having to wrestle with the flawed online process. It gives more information about health plan choices and provides clearer instructions on how to download a paper application, get through by telephone or find someone to assist in person.
“As part of our ongoing efforts to make improvements every day, new content is being featured on HealthCare.gov in response to user feedback. It’s now easier than ever to preview plan information, access a downloadable application form and find in-person help in local communities,” HHS spokeswoman Joanne Peters said in a statement released late Sunday evening.
The changes allow people to see health plans and prices in their region without having to jump over online hurdles that have aggravated millions of people trying to get on the Healthcare.gov site, the portal for health-care coverage in the 36 states where HHS is running the insurance exchanges.
People can also use an improved calculator, HHS said, to find out whether they can get subsidies and help with out-of-pocket health costs.