California health insurance exchange still has challenges to overcome

California Health Insurance

Exchange has a backlog of over 25,000 physical applications

The California health insurance exchange, called Covered California, has a backlog of over 25,000 paper applications. Consumers have been scrambling to apply for coverage through the state-run exchange, but have encountered several problems in doing so over the Internet. The exchange suffered from crippling technical issues during the early stages of its launch, but many of these issues have been resolved. Unfortunately, those seeking out coverage through physical applications have encountered other problems that have left them in the dark concerning insurance opportunities.

Backlog could be due to poor management

California Health Insurance Covered California officials suggest that the problem will be resolved by the end of the week, but critics suggest that the backlog is a symptom of a more serious problem with management. Consumers have until December 25 to acquire coverage through Covered California health insurance if they want that coverage to go active on January 1, 2014. Missing this deadline could put people at risk of financial penalties issued by the federal government. A poorly managed exchange could quickly become a problematic issue for the state as well as consumers.

Insurers claim that California health insurance exchange is unprepared for consumer attention

Some insurers are suggesting that Covered California was simply not prepared for the onslaught of attention it would receive. Indeed, many of the exchange’s early problems were due to its inability to handle a large amount of Internet traffic. This traffic put a huge strain on the exchange’s servers and made the exchange unable to serve consumers online. While Covered California’s Internet troubles may have been mostly resolved through the addition of new servers, the physical aspects of the exchange are now suffering from a similar problem.

Exchange expected to reach goals, despite problems

Despite the problems that Covered California is experiencing, it is working better than federal exchanges. Covered California has managed to enroll thousands of California residents within a relatively short amount of time and officials believe that the state-run exchange will be able to meet its enrollment goals in the near future. Federal exchanges, however, are still struggling to cope with the problems that plague HealthCare.gov.

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