NBC News reported it last night on their national prime-time broadcast, which means that even the media can’t ignore this, or at least not all of the media. In more late-Friday news, the expected rollout of the Spanish-language website and tools has been delayed — with no definite new launch date (via TWS):
HHS wants everyone to know that people can still call and enroll over the phone, except … they won’t know what plans are available, and especially won’t have any idea what providers the plans will access. That also requires enough operators to be on duty to handle the calls, and as we have seen over the last couple of weeks when television reporters try that option, consumers aren’t getting very far that way, either.
And there will be more consumers to handle, too. NBC also reported yesterday that insurers have begun cancelling the plans for individual purchasers who believed Barack Obama when he promised, “if you like their plan, you can keep your plan.” The flood of buh-bye letters has reached the hundreds of thousands — just for one insurer in Florida:
Health plans are sending hundreds of thousands of cancellation letters to people who buy their own coverage, frustrating some consumers who want to keep what they have and forcing others to buy more costly policies.
The main reason insurers offer is that the policies fall short of what the Affordable Care Act requires starting Jan. 1. Most are ending policies sold after the law passed in March 2010. At least a few are canceling plans sold to people with pre-existing medical conditions. …
Florida Blue, for example, is terminating about 300,000 policies, about 80 percent of its individual policies in the state. Kaiser Permanente in California has sent notices to 160,000 people – about half of its individual business in the state. Insurer Highmark in Pittsburgh is dropping about 20 percent of its individual market customers, while Independence Blue Cross, the major insurer in Philadelphia, is dropping about 45 percent.
Guess who the Pennsyvlania plans insured before ObamaCare?
Both Independence and Highmark are canceling so-called “guaranteed issue” policies, which had been sold to customers who had pre-existing medical conditions when they signed up. Policyholders with regular policies because they did not have health problems will be given an option to extend their coverage through next year.
The disaster goes far beyond the website. In fact, the website problems might be the high-water mark for the ObamaCare rollout in the end.