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Old 12-20-2013, 02:33 PM   #841
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Weird letters are arriving through the mail from Blue Shield and Covered CA. One was a reminder to finish our application, dated after we had already completed it. We had at least one computer generated letter with the key words left out where there obviously should have been variable data filled in from a database.

I got the same letters. Just out of pure cantankerosity, I put together a 'dispute' letter. Hey, the bottom of the reminder notice says "If you disagree with our decision...". I fired off the letter along with proof of enrollment that showed our total premium, subsidy, and net, and proof of payment. I figure that since the exchange is the arbiter of whether or not we are enrolled through them for purposes of my 2014 Federal tax retirn, I should maybe noodge them early and often.

Meanwhile, back at our insurance provider, I got bills for myself, DW, and DD for our January premiums. DW and I owe $0.00. DD owes the full rate for her coverage. Yes, I enrolled all three of us as a family. A phone call confirmed that we were all enrolled as a family, and that they had the first premium paid. The call center person said that they were in the process of updating all the records, and that I could ignore that bill. I'm on autopay, so we'll see what happens next...
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Old 12-20-2013, 02:37 PM   #842
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The saga continues.

Just got a call back from my contact at BCBSTX. She says they have backed out the first application with my incorrect information and confirmed that the second application and enrollment (completed 12/5) correctly lists my AI/AN status. In the next few days it should all be linked and I should see the ability to pay restored in the next few days -- and a card mailed out when they work out the kinks. But she assured me that yes, I am fully enrolled by December 23 per the requirements and will be covered on January 1 even if not invoiced or paid by then.

Also, because of all the back end problems she said BCBSTX was extending its deadline to pay the first month's premium until January 31. So even if it's not cleared up by January 1 she assured me I will be covered on that day as long as the first payment is received by January 31.
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Old 12-20-2013, 04:11 PM   #843
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After the site was down for a few hours I was able to log in and remove my son's application that was lost in the ether and submit all his info again. This is all with his permission. He's a Mac/Apple user only and he could never get anything at HealthCare.gov to work with his browsers. He had come home to use my computer with Internet Explorer to do his application a few weeks ago.

I sent him screen caps of all the confirmation pages and his new ID# and where it shows that his application is completed. There was a link to PAY FOR HEALTH PLAN but that didn't work, no surprise there.

In redoing his application I noticed that things on the site worked much better than before. Pages loaded quickly and I went through the whole thing very easily. It even retained most of his info from the initial enrollment. I was curious if the site now worked with Firefox and yes, it did. When I was first enrolling DH and I in October I only got blank pages with Firefox.
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Old 12-20-2013, 04:23 PM   #844
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After the site was down for a few hours I was able to log in and remove my son's application that was lost in the ether and submit all his info again. This is all with his permission. He's a Mac/Apple user only and he could never get anything at HealthCare.gov to work with his browsers. He had come home to use my computer with Internet Explorer to do his application a few weeks ago.

I sent him screen caps of all the confirmation pages and his new ID# and where it shows that his application is completed. There was a link to PAY FOR HEALTH PLAN but that didn't work, no surprise there.

In redoing his application I noticed that things on the site worked much better than before. Pages loaded quickly and I went through the whole thing very easily. It even retained most of his info from the initial enrollment. I was curious if the site now worked with Firefox and yes, it did. When I was first enrolling DH and I in October I only got blank pages with Firefox.
Hope this time it ends successfully. I had the same issue with my iPad, only the windows based desktop was able to navigate the healthcare system. I thought this was most ironic, given the focus on enrolling the young.
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Old 12-20-2013, 04:41 PM   #845
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Hopefully a final update from me for those of you in CA using Anthem. I applied early Nov, was finally able to confirm receipt of my application about 10 days ago at Anthem. I called today and spoke with a rep (after being on hold for about 30mins), and she emailed me a payment link while I was on the phone. She also told me that they just started sending out letters for the first month's payment late last week (but I hadn't received mine yet), and that I wouldn't receive the welcome letter / ID cards until my first month's payment is processed.

Assuming they are processing things in FIFO order, those of you who applied more recently may be behind this schedule a bit, but hopefully they're getting everything sorted out now. Good luck.
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Old 12-20-2013, 06:16 PM   #846
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The saga continues.

Just got a call back from my contact at BCBSTX. She says they have backed out the first application with my incorrect information and confirmed that the second application and enrollment (completed 12/5) correctly lists my AI/AN status. In the next few days it should all be linked and I should see the ability to pay restored in the next few days -- and a card mailed out when they work out the kinks. But she assured me that yes, I am fully enrolled by December 23 per the requirements and will be covered on January 1 even if not invoiced or paid by then.

Also, because of all the back end problems she said BCBSTX was extending its deadline to pay the first month's premium until January 31. So even if it's not cleared up by January 1 she assured me I will be covered on that day as long as the first payment is received by January 31.
I just found this too as we have questions about the payment for DH. Since we weren't able to reach anybody this week due to super long phone call wait times, we went ahead and mailed the check with the invoice after it wouldn't let us submit the payment online. All we really needed was for someone to tell us why it wouldn't accept the payment on-line - was it because drafting was set up?

AND two bills are being shown as due on line on Jan 1 for DH. One for the old policy. One for the new. They should not show the old policy bill due on Jan 1 since he clearly has enrolled in a new policy.

We're worried that both policies will be drafted on Jan 1. Not a real problem long term as I'm sure they can apply the credit agains future bills - just annoying. And we also sent a check in for the new policy invoice because we just had no other recourse since we couldn't reach anybody by phone.

Anyways - here is a BCBSTX press release from Dec 12 that includes a "new Bill Pay Triage Unit" phone number for payment specific questions. We'll call that next week to try to get his situation clarified. Blue Cross Blue Shield of Texas - Call Center Seeing High Call Volume Get Help with Common Questions

One thing on that page, they say:
Quote:
If you set up your premium payments through automatic bank draft, you will not receive a paper bill. Your account will be drafted on the date you chose when you set it up.
Not true. I received a paper invoice, even though they had already drafted my first premium. My husband is set up for automatic draft, but he also received a paper invoice. At least my online account shows I'm paid through 2/1/2014 on my new policy.

It's not just healthcare.gov having system problems. It's not just the state exchanges either. It's the private insurers too. This is just a huge, huge, huge event taking place in a relatively short time period.
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Old 12-20-2013, 06:17 PM   #847
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Last week the Grasshopper family had elgiblity credit letters and a chance to enroll. Today we went through all the possible scenarios, and decided for $100 a month we will stay with our grandfathered plan. It has a lower deductible and some other benefits we like. One thing that helped was at $60500 stated income and 6 figure LTCG's on the books, if I wanted to exit the market and take some gains, I would have to pay back 5K in credits. I think that in the 2 years it will take to sort things out by than I will be on Medicare.

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Old 12-20-2013, 06:53 PM   #848
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I bailed on signing up for ACA. In the whole state of Hawaii only 574 had signed up by 15 Nov. My verification process was still showing 2/01/2014 before citizenship, SSN status were to be completed. I was unable to upload a scan of my passport.

A call to the helpline last week, showed that they are now willing to accept email scan (previously only faxes.) However, my ancient social security card dissolved a few years ago and hasn't be replaced. I can't expatiate the verification process without it.

Fortunately, I got final confirmation recently that my existing Kaiser plan is grandfathered in so I'll pay the 10% higher premium and be glad of it. Lots of people are going to be scrambling this holiday season for health insurance.
Just from reading about people's frustration with ACA on this forum, I decided to stay with my pre-ACA plan for one more year to avoid high blood pressure. Even if I might have saved a few thousands, it is certainly not worth it. And there's no guarantee I would get insured even if I tried.

So, to this date I have not even tried to create an account on the gummint's Web site. Yet, I saw a while back that Boehner was able to get enrolled in his first try, and it only took him 1 hour, and there was something about someone called him on the phone right away when he got some kind of hiccups.

Hmm... Quite a different experience than what our members here have had. It should be noted however that Boehner signed up with the "DC exchange" which may not be the same Fed exchange that most people here went to. Anyway, when Boehner complained about the unfriendliness of the Web site he used, many pundits went public and said he "sabotaged" his own application to make a point, and that he made a big mountain out of mole hills. So, who do I believe?
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Old 12-20-2013, 07:04 PM   #849
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Just from reading about people's frustration with ACA on this forum, I decided to stay with my pre-ACA plan for one more year to avoid high blood pressure. Even if I might have saved a few thousands, it is certainly not worth it. And there's no guarantee I would get insured even if I tried.

So, to this date I have not even tried to create an account on the gummint's Web site. Yet, I saw a while back that Boehner was able to get enrolled in his first try, and it only took him 1 hour, and there was something about someone called him on the phone right away when he got some kind of hiccups.

Hmm... Quite a different experience than what our members here have had. It should be noted however that Boehner signed up with the "DC exchange" which may not be the same Fed exchange that most people here went to. Anyway, when Boehner complained about the unfriendliness of the Web site he used, many pundits went public and said he "sabotaged" his own application to make a point, and that he made a big mountain out of mole hills. So, who do I believe?
There are quite a few state exchanges that have had technical difficulties. Not just healthcare.gov. And private insurers have had numerous technical difficulties too. It's just a huge start-up thing to wade through in a relatively short period of time.

I can understand you waiting it out if you are comfortable with your current coverage. DH and I were happy to be able to go directly to our insurer of choice and not be dependent on healthcare.gov (and that's because we aren't eligible for any subsidies). There have still been a few hiccups even with our direct path. The volume is huge. But we are savings thousands even without a subsidy.
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Old 12-20-2013, 07:19 PM   #850
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...But we are savings thousands even without a subsidy.
I did look at another Web site that had supposedly a more accurate price quote than the Fed ACA site. I did not do a detailed comparison, but the premium was 2x what I am paying, in exchange for a bit lower deductible. No deal!

I might be able to get some subsidy as I can live off after-tax savings and have low "official" income, and that might change the balance. But it was definitely not worth the aggravation to even try to find out.
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Old 12-20-2013, 09:00 PM   #851
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I did look at another Web site that had supposedly a more accurate price quote than the Fed ACA site. I did not do a detailed comparison, but the premium was 2x what I am paying, in exchange for a bit lower deductible. No deal!

I might be able to get some subsidy as I can live off after-tax savings and have low "official" income, and that might change the balance. But it was definitely not worth the aggravation to even try to find out.
I got direct quotes from every insurer available to us.

I has no choice as my state risk pool is closing. My new policy is cheaper. DH could have stayed with his old coverage, but some of the new plans were cheaper with lower deductible and max OOP but still the same provider network. And HSA eligible. So he switched.

This definitely varies by state!
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Old 12-20-2013, 10:32 PM   #852
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Yes, I realize that some people do not have a choice but to fight through insane red tape to get insurance. I am just glad that my pre-ACA insurer has not closed down as it did in some other states, sparing me the aggravation that I do not need at the moment. For that, I am grateful.
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Old 12-20-2013, 10:58 PM   #853
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Yes, I realize that some people do not have a choice but to fight through insane red tape to get insurance. I am just glad that my pre-ACA insurer has not closed down as it did in some other states, sparing me the aggravation that I do not need at the moment. For that, I am grateful.

I went on COBRA 12/1/2013 when DH's retiree and dependent plan ended with his beginning Medicare. My plan had been to run with that for this month and go on an exchange policy beginning 1/1/14, which broad preliminary age ranges showed would be more economical (even with no subsidy). After trying the healthcare.gov site several times and getting nowhere early on, and reading so much about what is going on problem wise, we decided I should just do COBRA (there is only a single overpriced premium rather than a family, and there are issues I really need to be sure I will be able to be treated for if necessary, and COBRA will carry me to Medicare too in fall 2015, so it is fairly short term). Although without arguing I do feel something like the ACA is essential and hope and expect things will shake into place with it, I was glad during this initial rollout to have an alternative.
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Old 12-21-2013, 08:06 PM   #854
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DH's check cleared and it shows his first month is paid against his NEW policy. Progress!

Now we just gotta check that the old policy won't be drafted.
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Old 12-21-2013, 08:26 PM   #855
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Our check finally cleared also.

I will contact my current insurer on Monday to cancel and kill the automatic payments for it.
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Old 12-21-2013, 10:31 PM   #856
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After over a week, my credit card still has not been charged for my policy. I called Anthem on Wednesday, and Carlos assured me we are in the system and payment should be processed by Friday. Nope!
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Old 12-22-2013, 07:25 AM   #857
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After over a week, my credit card still has not been charged for my policy. I called Anthem on Wednesday, and Carlos assured me we are in the system and payment should be processed by Friday. Nope!

We charged our Anthem BC Covered CA premium on Dec. 10 using the web link given to us by Anthem over the phone. Still no pending charge showing on the card. Called a couple of times. We're in their system with the correct premium amount, but they tell me they still haven't fully processed our application and won't charge the card until they do. On my last call, I was told they got our app from Covered CA on Nov. 21 and they need to enter it into their system. It seems like it should be done by now but who knows. Despite the repeated assurances that everything is okay, I'm still a bit anxious.

Hopefully next year's enrollment will be easier.
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Old 12-22-2013, 07:35 AM   #858
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It seems like it should be done by now but who knows. Despite the repeated assurances that everything is okay, I'm still a bit anxious.
Same here. I was told in no uncertain terms by an escalations specialist with BCBSTX that yes, my enrollment is verified and in place, and we'll be covered on 1/1 even though first payment isn't due now until 1/31.... just the same, until I get the member card, until my first payment is processed, until the first claim is paid.... I'll be a little uneasy about it all.
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Old 12-22-2013, 08:49 AM   #859
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Got my cards in the mail yesterday, but the copays listed on the card for office visit and specialist are slightly higher than they told me they would be. Will have to call them and see what's going on.
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Old 12-22-2013, 10:33 AM   #860
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I just ventured out in the ice and snow to pick up Saturday mail. My card, welcome packet! Everything looks right. I'll set up online pay after the noon game.

Last real test, I see my Dr. after the first of the year, he's in network, I'll believe when it goes through.
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