Lawmakers, OIC deeply skeptical of WA Health Exchange

The temporary shutdown of the Washington Health Benefits Exchange website due to computer glitches on the first day of Open Enrollment 2, is just the tip of the iceberg, according to a report by King5 News.

State of Reform covered the Exchange’s delayed payments to insurance carriers which affected 15,000 Premera subscribers leading to $51 million in pended Premera claims due to Exchange error on Nov. 3. Though the Board expressed optimism at its last meeting, outlining strategies such as doubling the monthly payments to carriers and a “code fix” to the website, the actions have not yet done enough to fix the problem, according to King5.

15 to 20 percent of enrollees through Healthplanfinder are still experiencing issues, and the Exchange is now facing criticism not only from insurance carriers but State Insurance Commissioner Mike Kriedler and State Representative Reuven Carlyle as well. The Board’s request for $147 million for the next biennium, which is double its current spending, has met with friction and questions of accountability.

“I am deeply skeptical of their budget request and until we see meaningful oversight and accountability and technology improvements, I am not going to be supportive of additional resources until I see those improvements,” Carlyle told King 5.

The Exchange Board meets today to discuss strategies following the start of Open Enrollment 2. State of Reform will update Exchange Board developments as they come.

Watch the entire report here: