It's been three weeks since the Healthcare Marketplace launched, but for insurance shoppers it's been three weeks of errors, glitches and frustration.
"People want to move forward they want to make their decisions even though they have until march 2014 people understandably if they have pre-existing conditions want to know that they have that security of January 1 coverage in place." Said Deb Muller, Chief Administrative Officer for Avera Health Plans.
The biggest cause of glitches and delays? People simply not filling in their information.
"It's (the site) trying to validate your identity, so if you don't include your social security number what a lot of the hang up is or what people perceive as a glitch is the government trying to validate who you are if you aren't giving a social security number." Said Lisa Carlson, the director of planning and regulation for Sanford Health Plan.
It's not just your social security number but your family's numbers as well. Having your last year's W2 will also help speed things up. However for some, it just takes persistence.
"It took patience, sometimes it took several tries they would get through the registration process and then they would move on to plan selection before they had an opportunity to finish it and actually complete the enrollment cycle." Said Muller.
So far, 25 South Dakotans have had the patience and luck to make it through. 22 of those with Avera Health Plans and three selected a Sanford Health Plan. either way, their savings have already begun.
"I've heard $20, $40, $70, one even explain that they've received hundreds of dollars worth of savings which just impressed me to no end." Said Muller.
Sanford says they don't know whether their new enrollees were previously uninsured, but some were able to get zero dollar premiums.
"That's a good thing, it means that the people that need this are in fact out shopping and applying for coverage." Said Carlson.
With the president's announcement, the hope is that glitches will be patched quickly but in the mean time, just keep trying.
"As the website continues to work faster I think people will be inclined to go back for example if you logged on once and you couldn't get through and if you really need insurance those people are determined and they will continue to try to get through." Said Carlson.
One of the biggest improvements made to healthcare.gov was the ability to browse plans without creating an account. This way people are able to get an idea of what their premium will be without fully signing up.
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