Caroline's Feed
Oct 12, 2013

Red state or blue, Obamacare pricing seems apolitical

NEW YORK, Oct 12 (Reuters) – For Americans who are able to
check out new insurance plans launched under President Barack
Obama’s healthcare reform, the price differences from state to
state may be surprising.

Residents of Minnesota, a Democratic-led state, are likely
to pay the lowest monthly premiums in the country. Just two
states away, some residents of Republican-dominated Wyoming
might be surprised to find they will pay among the highest.

Oct 2, 2013

Web traffic, glitches slow Obamacare exchanges launch

By David Morgan and Caroline Humer

(Reuters) – Technical glitches and heavy internet traffic slowed Tuesday’s launch of new online insurance exchanges at the heart of President Barack Obama’s healthcare reform, showcasing the challenge of covering millions of uninsured Americans.

The opening itself represented a victory for Obama’s signature domestic policy achievement after years of attack from Republican foes and delays in building the technology infrastructure to support sites in 50 U.S. states. It defied a partial federal government shutdown precipitated by Republican efforts to delay the law’s implementation.

Oct 1, 2013

‘The system is down’: Obamacare glitches go public, reasons unclear

NEW YORK, Oct 1 (Reuters) – Blank boxes where security
questions are supposed to appear. Pleas to “be patient.” Error
messages galore. Notices that “the system is busy right now.”
Web pages timing out before they load. Garbled lines of text
riddled with stray question marks.

Technology experts and government officials were stumped
about the reasons for the computer glitches plaguing the Obama
administration’s launch of new health insurance exchanges
. They variously blamed an unexpected deluge of
customers and outright errors that information technology (IT)
teams labored throughout the day to fix.

Oct 1, 2013

Obamacare launch hits early hitch as online traffic snarls up sites

By David Morgan and Caroline Humer

(Reuters) – The U.S. government launched the centerpiece of President Barack Obama’s landmark healthcare reform on Tuesday, opening new insurance marketplaces across the country for millions of uninsured Americans, but technical glitches prevented early access to many of their websites.

The opening of the state marketplaces, or exchanges, went ahead despite a partial federal government shutdown precipitated by Republican opposition to the healthcare law that deadlocked a spending bill in Congress.

Sep 25, 2013

Obamacare’s average monthly cost across U.S.: $328

By Caroline Humer

(Reuters) – Americans will pay an average premium of $328 monthly for a mid-tier health insurance plan when the Obamacare health exchanges open for enrollment next week, and most will qualify for government subsidies to lower that price, the Obama administration said on Wednesday.

The figure, based on data for approved insurance plans in 48 states, represents the broadest national estimate for how much Americans will pay for health coverage under President Barack Obama’s healthcare reform law next year. The prices of the new plans are at the heart of a political debate over whether they will be affordable enough to attract millions of uninsured Americans.

Sep 23, 2013

Benefit firms create tremors for insurers in U.S. healthcare shakeup

NEW YORK, Sept 23 (Reuters) – American companies are sending
shockwaves through the healthcare industry by moving a rapidly
growing number of employees onto privately run online exchanges
for their medical coverage.

In a business already bracing for major change because of
President Barack Obama’s healthcare reforms, the decisions are
threatening to shift more power in the market to the benefit
consulting firms opening many of the exchanges.

Sep 20, 2013

Analysis: Benefit firms create tremors for insurers in U.S. healthcare shakeup

NEW YORK (Reuters) – American companies are sending shockwaves through the healthcare industry by moving a rapidly growing number of employees onto privately run online exchanges for their medical coverage.

In a business already bracing for major change because of President Barack Obama’s healthcare reforms, the decisions are threatening to shift more power in the market to the benefit consulting firms opening many of the exchanges.

Aug 29, 2013

Aetna pulls out of another Obamacare health exchange

By Caroline Humer

(Reuters) – Aetna Inc has decided not to sell insurance on New York’s individual health insurance exchange, which is being created under President Barack Obama’s healthcare reform law, the fifth state where it has reversed course in recent weeks.

The third-largest U.S. health insurer has said it is seeking to limit its exposure to the risks of providing health plans to America’s uninsured, but did not give details about its decision to pull out of specific markets.

Aug 28, 2013

U.S. delays deadline for finalizing Obamacare health plans

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Obama administration has delayed a step crucial to the launch of the new healthcare law, the signing of final agreements with insurance plans to be sold on federal health insurance exchanges starting October 1.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) notified insurance companies on Tuesday that it would not sign final agreements with the plans between September 5 and 9, as originally anticipated, but would wait until mid-September instead, according to insurance industry sources.

Aug 28, 2013

Exclusive: U.S. delays deadline for finalizing Obamacare health plans

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Obama administration has delayed a step crucial to the launch of the new healthcare law, the signing of final agreements with insurance plans to be sold on federal health insurance exchanges starting October 1.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) notified insurance companies on Tuesday that it would not sign final agreements with the plans between September 5 and 9, as originally anticipated, but would wait until mid-September instead, according to insurance industry sources.