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Problematic Website Slows Enrollment for Randolph Hospital

10:36 PM, Oct 25, 2013   |    comments
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ASHEBORO, N.C. -- Another day, another reason for the delays on healthcare.gov.

READ: How to Navigate the Insurance Exchange 

The website has been plagued with problems since it launched nearly a month ago. Many people have not been able to create accounts, submit applications, or purchase health insurance.

Friday, contractors blamed a lack of testing and last-minute changes causing the glitches but said they hope to have it fixed by the end of November.

Randolph Hospital has a team of trained and federally certified navigators to help people understand the Affordable Care Act and guide them through the process of buying insurance.

They have had nearly 100 people call or come in for help but not one person has been able to enroll.

"We anticipated a rocky start, certainly has been a rocky start with the website," said Devin Griffin, Vice President of Care Continuum and Support Services, Randolph Hospital. 

After weeks of prep work, hours of classes for certification, and countless questions answered, navigators at Randolph Hospital have been forced back to basics.

"We did not expect that we would have to do things pen and paper or via phone," said Griffin.

While healthcare.gov remains an unreliable site, the uninsured are registering for the insurance exchange over the phone and by mail. 

After their application is submitted, the client will find out what subsidies they qualify for and the amount of their tax credit.

"For a few people, it's been a matter of a few days, but for many people, we are just waiting."

What was designed to be complete in just one sitting is taking days and even weeks.Nationwide - only 3 out of 10 people have managed to create an application. 700,000 people have started one but how many have actually enrolled -- is unknown.

"We have not been able to the final step which shows people their options - how they can apply their tax credits and ultimately enroll," explained Griffin. 

Until then, these navigators are focusing on outreach and education, helping people begin their application and waiting for the website the work. 

Griffin said, "We know the need is there, we know the demand is there, we are just hopeful that federal website gets up and going very quickly."

Randolph Hospital has several forums scheduled to help people in Randolph, Moore and Montgomery counties. 

Wednesday, November 6
Montgomery County Library 
Education Session 
4:30 pm- 5:30 pm & 6:00-7:00 pm

Tuesday, November 12
Asheboro Senior Center
Education Session
2 - 3 p.m. 

Thursday, November 14
Randolph Hospital - Private Dining Room 
Educational Forum 
6 - 7:30 p.m. 

Tuesday, November 26
Asheboro Senior Center
Education Session
6 - 7 p.m.

To find a navigator near you, call 855-733-3711.

WFMY News 2

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