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House Asks For Delay For Obama-Care Sign-Up

From the Washington Examiner:

House asks for help as faulty DC website delays Obamacare enrollment for members, staff

By DAVID M. DRUCKER | DECEMBER 5, 2013

The House is asking the federal government to delay open enrollment in Obamacare for members and staff after widespread technical difficulties were reported by those attempting to purchase health insurance on the District of Columbia’s exchange website.

Even though they wrote the Obama-Care law and passed it. And even they are already getting extra help with their enrollment. (See below.)

Dan Strodel, the chief House administrative officer, sent an email to House members’ offices late Thursday advising them that the House has asked the federal Office of Personnel Management to delay the original Dec. 9 deadline for congressional staff to enroll in an Obamacare health insurance policy…

“With the end of the open enrollment period drawing near, we have made the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) and D.C. Health Link aware of the significant problems preventing Members and staff in Washington, D.C., and in district offices from enrolling in a healthcare plan via the D.C. Health Link website,” Strodel said in his email.

"We are urging OPM to take immediate steps to ensure that all Members and designated staff have the opportunity to enroll in a D.C. Health Link plan and receive confirmation of that enrollment upon completion of the process." …

Unlike the rest of the public, who have to call their insurance companies to see if they are really enrolled.

Some members of Congress and their staffs have reported significant problems signing up for coverage on DCHealthLink.com, the District’s online health insurance marketplace. Problems reported have included confirmed enrollments not showing up in the system, rejected passwords when attempting to log into an account, notifications of ineligibility to purchase insurance on the D.C. exchange, and the same technical snafus reported with healthcare.gov, the much-maligned federal exchange.

“The biggest frustration has been the website and getting a response back from them,” a Republican House staffer told the Examiner.

“It’s becoming clearer by the hour that the D.C. Health Link website is failing as utterly as the nationwide Obamacare website,” added House Administration Committee Chairman Candice Miller, R-Mich. “At this point, the House is doing everything possible to assist our employees and their families from losing health care coverage because of this deeply flawed enrollment process.” …

And never mind that, as the New York Times reported last month, Congress has special Obama-Care ‘perks’ even beyond their 75% premium subsidy. For Congress also has a special dedicated website, as well as special dedicated navigators, and special help lines:

"While millions of Americans have been left to fend for themselves and go through the frustrating experience of trying to navigate the federal exchange, members of Congress and their aides have all sorts of assistance to help them sort through their options and enroll. Lawmakers [and their staff]… will receive coverage next year through the small-business marketplace of the local insurance exchange, known as D.C. Health Link, which has staff members close at hand for guidance… If lawmakers have questions about… plan benefits and provider networks, they can call a special phone number that provides “member services for members of Congress and staff.”

However, a spokesman for D.C. exchange said few problems have been reported. “We haven’t been hearing widespread concerns or complaints,” said Richard Sorian, director of communications, education and outreach for D.C. Health Link…

Of course not. After all, the members who are complaining are probably just Republican ‘saboteurs.’

This article was posted by Steve Gilbert on Friday, December 6th, 2013. Comments are currently closed.

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