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Frustration with Health Care Web Sign-Up

FOX 47 News

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Frustration with Health Care Web Sign-Up

CREATED Oct. 18, 2013

LANSING -- More than two weeks ago, the website to sign up for the government health care exchange launched; but it has seen more frustration than enrollment. Locally, even the people who are supposed to help you sign up say they are fed-up.

"There are a lot of technological problems behind the exchange. There's a lot of frustration out there," said Michael James, Senior Health Care Attorney for Faser-Trebilcock.

Healthcare.gov has been locking up, crashing, and kicking off potential customers. It's been so unpredictable that health care navigators at Michigan Consumers for Health Care say they've given up on the website, and are instead enrolling all individuals through paperwork.

"You just have to roll with the punches. I have to be a guide and I can't get frustrated. You just keep moving forward," said James.

These website hiccups are just the beginning, according to insurance agent Greg Brogan. Once people make it on the site, the options can be overwhelming for those who've never had insurance before.

"In Mid-Michigan we have 25 plan options and five carriers. Some have narrow networks. It all takes an amount of education to make the right purchase," said Brogan, with Brogan, Reed, Van Gorder & Assoc.

The government has been trying to fix the problems, and they've even called in private consultants to help. But some people are worried that it won't be ready by November 1st, when small businesses can also start enrolling.

"The basic thing is to be patient, and to talk with people who understand the exchanges and health care reform," said James.

If you have questions about the Affordable Care Act, there is an event on October 24th. Speakers from McLaren, Blue Cross Blue Shield, and Michigan Consumers for Health Care will be giving "Affordable Care Act 101."

It'll start at 6 pm at the Hannah Community Center in East Lansing.

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