2. The narrow provider network plans for 2016 are priced more competitively than broad provider network plans but they are difficult for most consumers to understand the network restrictions. When it's been proven that folks are purchasing by price, one has to ask what the ramifications are for being in a plan for 12 months that may not offer adequate provider coverage. I see many claims inquiry calls in our near future!
3. Insurance purchasing from the marketplace is NOT as easy as purchasing an airline ticket. Many never believed it would be.
4. Everyone is mad as hell and they are not going to take it anymore! I can't exclude myself from this category. Consumers are shell-shocked by pricing and the less-than-stellar plan offerings. Many consumers were anxious to get rates on opening day November 1st but waited until the very last minute to make a purchase because they felt there were no affordable or attractive offerings. What will next year bring?
5. I've heard more this year than the previous two that "I'll just pay the tax penalty" because purchasing a plan would be financially detrimental to them. Of course, the biggest issue is that these folks may save money by paying the penalty but ultimately they are uninsured and vulnerable to large claims exposure.
6. Wrong, wrong, wrong... If I had a nickel every time we received "bad" information from sources that should be in the know, my income would be well above any subsidy level! Who will protect the consumer from this poor information? Fewer Agents are offering assistance in this market which means fewer sources of accurate information.
At the core of my observations is that the health insurance world is not getting any easier to maneuver. Consumers must be protected and for as long as possible, we'll be here to fight the good fight!
I value your comments and feedback below and would appreciate hearing your experiences this enrollment season. Also, if you have subjects you would like covered in future posts, such as Employer Reporting – it would be great to hear about them too!