Author Topic: Oregon Health Care Exchange Has Yet To Enroll A Single Person  (Read 297 times)

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Offline Cincinnatus

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Oregon Health Care Exchange Has Yet To Enroll A Single Person
« on: November 12, 2013, 12:47:28 AM »
On another thread, How States Rejecting the Medicaid Expansion Sabotaged Their Biggest Cities, there is a map showing the Current Status of State Medicaid Expansions as of October 22, 2013. Liberal Oregon is shown as "moving forward at this time". Perhaps on Medicaid but certainly not on ObamaCare which I think incorporates Medicaid.

With a reputation as a pacesetter in health care, Oregon laid out bold plans for complying with the federal overhaul.

The state wouldn’t just create a health insurance exchange, a complicated undertaking in its own right. Oregon officials set out to build one of the biggest and best in the nation — a model that other states would want to copy.

But more than a month after Cover Oregon’s online enrollment was supposed to launch, reality is lagging far behind Gov. John Kitzhaber’s grand ideas. The online system still doesn’t work, and the exchange has yet to enroll a single person in health insurance.

Interviews with state officials and a review of public records by The Associated Press suggest Cover Oregon officials bit off more than they could chew and clung to their ambitious vision even when their risk management consultants raised alarms.

While rushing to get the exchange done, programmers and project managers also were busy with separate complex computer projects for the Oregon Health Authority and the Department of Human Services.

Cover Oregon officials say they’re working hard to finish the project and insist the features they’re creating will be worth the wait — even if it remains unclear when the site will go online...

More than $300 million has been spent on the exchange so far, but the online enrollment system is still having trouble accurately determining whether people in complex family arrangements are eligible for Medicaid or the Children’s Health Insurance Program...

Over the past year, Cover Oregon’s risk consultant, Maximus, warned that the project was in danger of missing the Oct. 1 deadline to go live. In March, Maximus suggested that Cover Oregon re-organize its business to make individuals, small businesses and Medicaid distinct so one piece could be delayed if it was holding up the others. Cover Oregon rejected the suggestion, saying it was required to launch everything together on Oct. 1.

Oregon’s exchange struggles are far from isolated. The federal website running exchanges for 36 states has been mired with problems, and many states that are running their own exchanges have endured small glitches. But Oregon’s problems stand out, both because of their severity and because the state has held itself out as a leader.

There’s still no estimate for when online enrollment will be available, and officials are now urging people who need or want insurance to fill out a paper application or an online PDF and send it in as soon as possible. Applications are being processed by hand — a process that’s likely to take weeks, rather than the minutes that the website promised.

On Friday, the state announced plans to hire at least 400 people to process the paper applications.

“It is a complex system,” Kitzhaber said at a recent news conference when asked whether the state took on too much complexity. “But I think once we get through this initial rollout phase it’s going to be a real asset for us.” [emphasis added, amusement is optional]

Yeah, you just wait until we get this thing straightened out. It will be great.
« Last Edit: November 12, 2013, 12:48:19 AM by Cincinnatus »
We shall never be abandoned by Heaven while we act worthy of its aid ~~ Samuel Adams

Offline Cincinnatus

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Re: Oregon Health Care Exchange Has Yet To Enroll A Single Person
« Reply #1 on: January 13, 2014, 04:18:47 PM »
Current headline:
Oregon’s Obamacare Online Enrollment System Still Doesn’t Work More Than 3 Months After It Was Supposed To Launch

Gov. John Kitzhaber said Thursday the state has hired a firm to conduct an independent review of what went wrong with Oregon’s troubled health insurance exchange.

Several states and the federal government have struggled with exchange technology, but none as much as Oregon. Cover Oregon’s online enrollment system still doesn’t work more than three months after it was supposed to launch, and the state has hired or reassigned hundreds of workers to manually process applications. Officials say they hope the online system will be operational by March.

The state will pay First Data Government Solutions LP $228,000 to conduct the review, which is expected to begin later this month and take about six weeks.

Well after all Kitzhaber did promise the OR website would be a model for the nation.

We shall never be abandoned by Heaven while we act worthy of its aid ~~ Samuel Adams

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