HealthCare.gov is now working 90% of the time, according to officials, though glitches sometimes come up. So those of you who don’t have health insurance or whose individual plans have been cancelled have until the end of the month to buy Obamacare-approved insurance on the exchange. Otherwise, you won’t be covered by January 1 and you will risk fines for the crime of being uninsured. (You have until March 31 before the penalties click in. In a system all of the parts have to work, which is hard in this case since parts of Obamacare have been postponed. It gets very confusing. Here is a helpful guide to it all.)
So now is the time to poll you readers who are most immediately affected by the Obamacare laws. I would very much like to hear from those of you who don’t currently have health insurance and who will be required to buy it, possibly with the help of government subsidies, under Obamacare. Will you do so? Or would you rather pay the fine? (The links above will show you about how much it will be.) Are you glad that Obamacare is making you get health insurance?
The Obama administration said Sunday that it had met its goal of improving the online health-insurance marketplace so that it works well for the vast majority of users but acknowledged it still has extensive work to do to buttress a troubled Web site that has marred the rollout of President Obama’s signature health-care initiative.
After a series of technical fixes and capacity upgrades, many of which were made over the past week, HealthCare.gov is now working more than 90 percent of the time — a big improvement over October, when the site was operating only about 43 percent of the time and frequently crashed, said Jeffrey Zients, the administration official overseeing the improvements.
“Bottom line, HealthCare.gov on December 1st is night and day from where it was on October 1st,” when the site was launched, Zients said in a teleconference with reporters Sunday morning.
Even with the improved performance, some people are likely to encounter problems on the site. And there is another worry — reports sent to insurance companies about who has enrolled in health plans include errors that could cause problems when people try to use their new insurance plans next year.
Administration officials, in talking to reporters, were careful not to declare a full-fledged victory. In a report issued Sunday, officials with the Department of Health and Human Services said the next few months would require further work to “improve and enhance the website and continue to improve the consumer experience.” Officials have also said repeatedly that consumers might still encounter difficulties and urged them to use the call center and seek help from specially trained personnel.