Colorado underperforming on even their worst-case ObamaCare enrollment projections

posted at 3:41 pm on November 26, 2013 by Erika Johnsen

For lack of better federal-exchange related news, ObamaCare fans have lately turned to touting some of the enrollment numbers picking up speed in a handful of the fourteen states that independently constructed their own ObamaCare exchanges as proof of the new system’s overarching merits that will eventually shine through everywhere — but not all of the updates coming in from those states are all that rosy. Over in gung-ho Oregon, their exchange is still a stalled-out, fritzy mess, with nary a single customer having managed to enroll through it:

Oregon once led the country in implementing Obamacare. Now it’s just about dead last.

Not one person has yet enrolled in the Cover Oregon insurance exchange — a major embarrassment to state policymakers who early on had wholeheartedly embraced the Affordable Care Act even as other states tried their best to hinder it.

After repeatedly delaying its website’s enrollment feature because of technical problems, exchange officials are still scrambling. Gov. John Kitzhaber announced new efforts Friday toward that goal, but mid-December is the soonest officials expect online enrollment could be available, and even that date is in doubt. Until then, the only way to sign up for coverage through the state-run program is via paper — a very long way from where Oregon had originally envisioned itself this far into open-enrollment season. The breakdown illustrates how even a gung-ho, tech-savvy state can stumble badly while attempting to expand coverage.

And Hawaii is about to become the first state to give the lead administrator in charge of putting together their very troubled exchange the ol’ heave-ho:

The official charged with launching Hawaii’s troubled ObamaCare insurance exchange will resign next month, according to multiple reports.

Coral Andrews, the executive director of Hawaii Health Connector, is the first marketplace director to leave her post since Oct. 1, when the exchanges launched.

The Hawaii Health Connector went live on Oct. 15 due to software problems and had only enrolled 257 people in its first month of operation, according to the Honolulu Star Advertiser.

In perhaps the worst news for ObamaCare, however, Colorado’s exchange had a few ‘glitches’ to deal with but has been working relatively smoothly — and yet, their exchange has enrolled enough participants to cover just about half of their worst-case scenario projections, which is raising concerns about financing just the cost of the exchange in and of itself, via the DC:

Colorado’s Obamacare exchange has enrolled just about half of its worst-case scenario projections, with state leaders blaming public disinterest.

Just 6,001 Colorado residents have signed up for private insurance in the state-run exchange as of Connect for Health Colorado’s last announcement on Nov. 18, but The Denver Post reports Monday that the lowest enrollment estimate officials had made for mid-November was 11,108. …

Internal emails between the exchange’s board members warn that the drastically low enrollment figures could compromise Connect for Health Colorado’s “ability to deliver on promises made to Colorado citizens.” …

Many Colorado officials believe the low enrollment isn’t due to poor performance, though — instead, they argue, Colorado residents just aren’t interested.

Exchange board member Dr. Mike Fallon said “None of this surprises me… I don’t know what we as a board could have done. Health insurance is a difficult product to sell.”

So, those Brosurance/Hosurance ads haven’t really caught on, then? Man, that’s weird.


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Got FAIL?

Cicero43 on November 26, 2013 at 3:46 PM

Exchange board member Dr. Mike Fallon said “None of this surprises me… I don’t know what we as a board could have done. Health insurance is a difficult product to sell.”

So difficult that 300 million already had it 4 yrs ago…maybe you omitted a few words like “high premiums”, “ridiculous deductibles”, “Pathetic co pays” and “less drs and hospital choices”—then your statement would be accurate.

hillsoftx on November 26, 2013 at 3:48 PM

Health insurance is a difficult product to sell.”

No, it’s not.

Crappy Health insurance is a difficult product to sell.”

FIFY.

BacaDog on November 26, 2013 at 3:49 PM

But they have such a wonderful advertising campaign for all the bros and hos…..

dentarthurdent on November 26, 2013 at 3:49 PM

No surprise. Notwithstanding the projection that Colorado would be one of few state where premiums were expected to go down, the plans are quite expensive. Plus, you don’t have to sign in to see the prices, so potential customers are getting scared off before they’ve gone through the process of providing personal data.

Dead Hand Control on November 26, 2013 at 3:49 PM

Colorado’s Obamacare exchange has enrolled just about half of its worst-case scenario projections, with state leaders blaming public disinterest.

Seriously? This has been the most hyped Government event since the friggin Moon landings and they are blaming it on disinterest…..Lame.

Johnnyreb on November 26, 2013 at 3:51 PM

I suspect I may later feel the pain, but for now, I have two words:

Ha ha!

freedomfirst on November 26, 2013 at 3:53 PM

Hows MD doing? Did they break 15k yet?

Gatsu on November 26, 2013 at 3:54 PM

Internal emails between the exchange’s board members warn that the drastically low enrollment figures could compromise Connect for Health Colorado’s “ability to deliver on promises made to Colorado citizens.” …

I don’t know why this would be of a problem to any of the Dems, they don’t seems to have a problem not delivering on promises.

Kat_man on November 26, 2013 at 3:54 PM

Exchange board member Dr. Mike Fallon said “None of this surprises me… I don’t know what we as a board could have done. Health insurance is a difficult product to sell.”

No you moron – people fight back when they are FORCED by the gubmint to buy a crappy overpriced product.
And apparently the bros and hos aren’t as stupid as you thought they were.

dentarthurdent on November 26, 2013 at 3:56 PM

I predict that know-it-all liberals are going to hate their Thanksgiving get togethers this year. They are going to attempt to lecture family, and the blow back will be epic. What’s the betting line on when Obama’s popularity drops into the 20′s?

NotCoach on November 26, 2013 at 3:56 PM

No surprise. Notwithstanding the projection that Colorado would be one of few state where premiums were expected to go down, the plans are quite expensive. Plus, you don’t have to sign in to see the prices, so potential customers are getting scared off before they’ve gone through the process of providing personal data.

Dead Hand Control on November 26, 2013 at 3:49 PM

That’s not what my wife said. She went and checked out the site when she was still working at the library (they were pushing all library employees to be 0scare salespeople). She said you actually do have to enter a lot of your personal (financial) info (26 pages worth) just to get a price.

dentarthurdent on November 26, 2013 at 3:59 PM

To be declaimed in a prissy, grand-duchessy manner:

Many Colorado officials believe the low enrollment isn’t due to poor performance, though — instead, they argue, Colorado residents just aren’t interested.

guffaw

MisterElephant on November 26, 2013 at 4:01 PM

Exchange board member Dr. Mike Fallon said “None of this surprises me… I don’t know what we as a board could have done. Health insurance is a difficult product to sell.”

I see others have already shot this full of holes, but here’s my contribution:

Yep. That’s why Blue Cross/Blue Shield is such a small company.

/s

cs89 on November 26, 2013 at 4:03 PM

NotCoach on November 26, 2013 at 3:56 PM

Could just as accurately be said: “I predict that know-it-all liberals are going to be hated at their Thanksgiving get togethers this year. They are going to attempt to lecture family, and the blow back will be epic.”

lulz

MisterElephant on November 26, 2013 at 4:05 PM

No surprise. Notwithstanding the projection that Colorado would be one of few state where premiums were expected to go down, the plans are quite expensive. Plus, you don’t have to sign in to see the prices, so potential customers are getting scared off before they’ve gone through the process of providing personal data.

Dead Hand Control on November 26, 2013 at 3:49 PM

That’s not what my wife said. She went and checked out the site when she was still working at the library (they were pushing all library employees to be 0scare salespeople). She said you actually do have to enter a lot of your personal (financial) info (26 pages worth) just to get a price.

dentarthurdent on November 26, 2013 at 3:59 PM

Do you also live in Colorado? He’s speaking specifically of the Colorado exchange.

makattak on November 26, 2013 at 4:06 PM

Dead Hand Control on November 26, 2013 at 3:49 PM

That’s not what my wife said. She went and checked out the site when she was still working at the library (they were pushing all library employees to be 0scare salespeople). She said you actually do have to enter a lot of your personal (financial) info (26 pages worth) just to get a price.

dentarthurdent on November 26, 2013 at 3:59 PM

My point being, many people are probably scared away by the news of these exchanges being hacker/scammer heaven – so they don’t want to submit all their info and risk identity theft just to find out how horribly expensive it is.

dentarthurdent on November 26, 2013 at 4:07 PM

Do you also live in Colorado? He’s speaking specifically of the Colorado exchange.

makattak on November 26, 2013 at 4:06 PM

Yes.
And all the employees in the library district had to go to training about the exchange, provided by an official 0scare “navigator”.

I’m just passing on what my wife told me. I have personally never even gone to the web site.

dentarthurdent on November 26, 2013 at 4:09 PM


Coral Andrews, the executive director of Hawaii Health Connector, is the first marketplace director to leave her post since Oct. 1, when the exchanges launched.

Put that on your resume, babe.

HomeoftheBrave on November 26, 2013 at 4:11 PM

Dudes, this is Oregon, not Colorado.

Speechlesstx on November 26, 2013 at 4:13 PM

Coral Andrews, the executive director of Hawaii Health Connector, is the first marketplace director to leave her post since Oct. 1, when the exchanges launched.

Put that on your resume, babe.

HomeoftheBrave on November 26, 2013 at 4:11 PM

ACORN and OFA eagerly await her application…..

If she moves to the mainland, maybe Zuckerberg will pick her up as an Asian import laborer….

dentarthurdent on November 26, 2013 at 4:18 PM

state leaders blaming public disinterest

It’s almost like there was no crisis at all, like the majority of people, maybe 85% maybe, liked their insurance policy.

Ya think?

PattyJ on November 26, 2013 at 4:22 PM

Isn’t it AMAZING that government bureaucrats are surprised by the fact that PEOPLE DON’T WANT THE FREAKING GOVERNMENT IN THEIR PERSONAL BUSINESS!

GarandFan on November 26, 2013 at 4:22 PM

Our friggin government and state governments should not be selling anything. It is appalling to see governments spend tax dollars trying to convince citizens to buy stuff. Just like it is appalling to see obama, and others like him, use tax dollars to fly around the country trying to sell himself.

GaltBlvnAtty on November 26, 2013 at 4:22 PM

I know its ‘painting with broad brushstrokes’, but recent examples (Obama-phone girl and the Detroit Mayor asking for freebies from the WH) indicate that the lefties in Colorado don’t have the desire to expend the effort to enroll. They want money for nothin’…cue Dire Straits

socalcon on November 26, 2013 at 4:25 PM

Perhaps the target audience mistook the ad for a parody, as I did the first time I saw it.

bmmg39 on November 26, 2013 at 4:25 PM

Many Colorado officials believe the low enrollment isn’t due to poor performance, though — instead, they argue, Colorado residents just aren’t interested.

The “O-care marketplace pricing has bent the cost curve, now affordable insurance is available via private insurance companies!!!” lefty talking point in 3…2…

socalcon on November 26, 2013 at 4:29 PM

The “O-care marketplace pricing has bent the cost curve, now affordable insurance is available via private insurance companies!!!” lefty talking point in 3…2…

socalcon on November 26, 2013 at 4:29 PM

Did that cost curve bend down or up?
“Forward!! Up or down doesn’t matter – we’re moving FORWARD!!!!”

dentarthurdent on November 26, 2013 at 4:32 PM

It’s hard to sell overpriced health insurance that features things like sex change operations and lactation services whether you want them or not.

talkingpoints on November 26, 2013 at 4:32 PM

Health insurance is a difficult product to sell.

Is this the Ken version of Barbie’s “Math is hard”? LOL

Yep. That’s why Blue Cross/Blue Shield is such a small company.

/s

cs89 on November 26, 2013 at 4:03 PM

I’m going to toss this one back, though. Health insurance may be hard to sell – but most Americans have never bought any, and the folks to whom BCBS sells are *companies*. They’re big because of the tax incentives for employer-provided health coverage.

I’m not really disagreeing with the snark, but we need to realize that most Americans seldom give much of a look at their health coverage at all – until they get denied coverage for something. Most Americans are covered through their employers, and those employers make the choices for them for the most part. Even the choice I had to make between available plans didn’t involve any real sales work – I only had two choices and I had to pick one of them.

Despite the pain and suffering involved in reading fine print, I would love to have a free market to pick and choose in that more resembled the auto insurance market. Heck, you could even break it down to smaller packages, so you could get a better grasp of what each plan involved than the current broad “health care” umbrella.

GWB on November 26, 2013 at 4:35 PM

A program that costs $600,000,000 to enroll about 600,000 people by year’s end, if they’re lucky, would result in an expenditure of $1000 per person just to sign up!

MJBrutus on November 26, 2013 at 4:36 PM

Oregon is using paper? Oregon hates the environment!

rbj on November 26, 2013 at 4:37 PM

Let’s do the honorable and decent thing and put this lame animal to sleep. Euthanize Obamacare!

islandman78 on November 26, 2013 at 4:37 PM

Dudes, this is Oregon, not Colorado.

Speechlesstx on November 26, 2013 at 4:13 PM

Read past the first paragraph and first excerpt, knucklehead.

GWB on November 26, 2013 at 4:37 PM

talkingpoints on November 26, 2013 at 4:32 PM

Precisely. Obama and his best and brightest helpers have built a system that relies on healthy people volunteering to get ripped off. Mazel Tov with all that.

MJBrutus on November 26, 2013 at 4:38 PM

Desperado is way sweet!

Schadenfreude on November 26, 2013 at 4:39 PM

Isn’t it AMAZING that government bureaucrats are surprised by the fact that PEOPLE DON’T WANT THE FREAKING GOVERNMENT IN THEIR PERSONAL BUSINESS!

GarandFan on November 26, 2013 at 4:22 PM

Check out the headline article on progressivism. Last paragraph, last sentence. This is why: these people are our saviors, donchano?

GWB on November 26, 2013 at 4:41 PM

Let’s do the honorable and decent thing and put this lame animal to sleep. Euthanize Obamacare!

islandman78 on November 26, 2013 at 4:37 PM

But there’s like eleventy billion kids that NEED this to survive….it’s for the children, sob, sob, sob, or they’ll all die horrible deaths, sob, sniffle, choke…..

dentarthurdent on November 26, 2013 at 4:42 PM

BarryCare, in all of its permutations, is making those ’62 Mets look pretty good!

Another Drew on November 26, 2013 at 4:46 PM

We might have stumbled onto something here. As more of these redistribution schemes are implemented people should just refuse to participate. All redistribution programs will fail if there is no participation, and as we have seen, being the law of the land doesn’t mean a thing if it’s not enforced, and the only way these programs get any support from the people is if they lie about them, and so on and so on….

lea on November 26, 2013 at 6:08 PM

Colo is tredionally a conservative state. I look forward to Hickelooper run over by my grandpa’s balles calves

kenny on November 26, 2013 at 6:22 PM

Meanwhile, not far away…

IRAN REJECTS ‘INVALID’ NUKE DETAILS (according to Drudge)

The f*cking ink isn’t dry, and they’re *already* dicking around.

If Obama had on milliamp of common decency, self-respect, or honor of *any* kind, he’d resign and apologize…and then commit seppuku.

Oh, and …I’m betting the numbers here in Colorado are inflated.

a5minmajor on November 26, 2013 at 6:41 PM

*one

a5minmajor on November 26, 2013 at 6:41 PM

Many Colorado officials believe the low enrollment isn’t due to poor performance, though — instead, they argue, Colorado residents just aren’t interested.

That’s the money-quote: even if all these sites worked, not enough people are interested in Obamacare ™ to sustain it.

In years gone-by it would have taken ages to find out that a government program was a failure. Now we can see the train-wreck at internet-speed.

virgo on November 26, 2013 at 9:10 PM

Citizens’ Council for Health Freedom has been pushing opt out for months. I don’t even sign their damn hipaa forms any more at the doctors’ offices, and I don’t answer their invasive social services type questions for mine and my children’s appointments.

winoceros on November 27, 2013 at 1:40 AM

The president who destroyed the health care system of the Untied States of America. My God that must really sting. HAHA poor Hopey… Poor US!

Maxlugar on November 27, 2013 at 8:02 AM