October 01,2013

Press Contact:

Julia Lawless, Antonia Ferrier, 202.224.4515

ObamaCare: Are They Really Ready?

A Closer Look At What People Are Saying About The Launch of the Health Insurance Exchanges

“I’m really confused,” “I’m just really frustrated,” “We could crash and burn,” and “We’ve been a little overwhelmed,” is how Americans, health care professionals and job creators have been talking about ObamaCare’s health insurance exchanges - the online marketplace where the uninsured are mandated to shop for health care coverage.

With the launch of the exchanges today, here is a closer look at what people are saying:  

"I'm pretty fluent on the Internet. I've applied for a lot of things, and there are always glitches. But this was totally disappointing. I'm just really frustrated." - Jon Tucci of West Virginia, who spent 10 hours, two attempts and one 45 minute phone call with a service agent only to find out he could not enroll in a health plan because of technical glitches. (Washington Post, October 1, 2013)

“The system is down. I have no idea what caused it or how widespread it might be.” - Lynne Thorp, project manager of the health care navigator program covering 10 Florida counties, speaking on computer glitches that prevented consumers from signing up for a health plan. (Sarasota Herald Tribune, October 1, 2013)

"It's a little hectic, as you can imagine. We've been a little overwhelmed."  - José Calderón, President of the Hispanic Federation, a national organization that received government funds to help New Yorkers enroll.  (Reuters, September 30, 2013)

UPDATE:  New Yorkers were unable to enroll this morning because “The System is down at the moment.”

“I have no idea what this thing’s going to look like on Oct. 1. We could crash and burn and have to close it down.” - Rocky King, Executive Director of Oregon’s new health insurance exchange. (New York Times, September 29, 2013)

UPDATE: Oregonians were unable to enroll in coverage this morning due to “glitches.”

"I'm really confused, but one thing I know is I can't afford it." - Earle Griffis, 46, an uninsured commercial fisherman from Milton, Fla., speaking on health care costs under ObamaCare. (NBC News, September 30, 2013)

UPDATE: Floridians efforts to enroll in a health plan this morning were “stymied by computer issues that failed.”

"I don't expect to be able to get ahold of anybody, but I'll do the best I can." - Susan Fattouh, an uninsured 58-year-old massage therapist from Port Orange, Fla., on expectations for enrollment exchange assistance. (Wall Street Journal, September 29, 2013)

UPDATE: Floridians efforts to enroll in a health plan this morning were “stymied by computer issues that failed.”

“It’s very difficult for small-business owners to keep up when the rules of the game keep changing.” - Kevin Kuhlman, with the National Federation of Independent Business. (Politico, September 30, 2013)

"We don't have any practice runs." - David Aguirre, Greater Phoenix Urban League Inc., speaking about nonprofits ability to preview tools before the October 1 launch. (Wall Street Journal, September 29, 2013)