Insurance Commissioner launches special enrollment period for some consumers in Washington
Following several months of consumer complaints regarding Washington’s health insurance exchange, Insurance Commissioner Mike Kreidler is taking action on the matter. The state’s exchange has been crippled for some time by technical problems and billing issues that have left many consumers without insurance coverage. Some of the exchange’s problems have been resolved, and Commissioner Kreidler has launched a special enrollment period in order to ensure that some consumers have adequate access to the health insurance services that they need.
Enrollment period will be open to those that have had payment issues with their exchange policies
The special enrollment period will begin this week and run through November 14. The enrollment period is only open to people that have had payment problems with the policies they have purchased through the state’s insurance exchange. These people will be able to use the enrollment period to purchase new health insurance policies directly from insurers rather than through the exchange itself. State officials have begun encouraging consumers to avoid the exchange and connect with insurance companies directly.
Poor communication causes problems for consumers with insurance coverage
Currently, one of the most problematic issues that the exchange is facing has to do with communication. There has been very poor communication between the exchange itself and private insurance companies that are selling policies through the exchange. Ineffective communication has actually resulted in many people believing they have insurance coverage when they do not. Billings issues have also caused lapses in insurance coverage for some people.
Washington’s exchange may be up and running again by November
The state’s insurance exchange has succumbed to many challenges over the past year, but some of the exchange’s issues are being resolved. By November, the exchange may be able to provide adequate services to consumers in time for a new open enrollment period. The Washington health insurance exchange is not the only exchange suffering from technical issues, of course, and exchanges in other states have been harshly criticized for their failure to provide services to consumers.