2020 OPEN ENROLLMENT ENDS (most states)

Time: D H M S

Annnnnnd the inevitable deadline extensions begin: CT allows "start by 12/15, finish by 12/19" overtime period; MN bumps deadline out until 12/20

THIS JUST IN...

For Immediate Release

STATEMENT FROM ACCESS HEALTH CT ACTING CEO JIM WADLEIGH ON TONIGHT’S OPEN ENROLLMENT DEADLINE FOR HEALTH CARE COVERAGE BEGINNING JANUARY 1, 2015

Hartford, Conn. (December 15, 2014) – In advance of tonight’s midnight deadline for coverage beginning January 1, Access Health CT (AHCT) Acting CEO Jim Wadleigh has released the following statement:

“The deadline to sign up for quality, affordable health care coverage that begins on January 1, 2015 is tonight at midnight. If customers have an application started and select a plan before midnight tonight, they can still get coverage beginning January 1, as long as they complete the application and get us all the relevant information by midnight this Friday, December 19.

We hope that this grace period will allow ample time for customers to complete their applications and have any remaining questions answered. We urge costumers to use Access Health CT’s customer resources to get the assistance they need to get coverage beginning on January 1, 2015.

Access Health CT call center representatives are available at 1‐855‐805-HEALTH (4325) and in-person assistance is available at the AHCT enrollment centers in New Britain and New Haven, at 12 Community Enrollment Partner sites, and via licensed insurance brokers. More information is available on AHCT’s website at www.accesshealthct.com.

Consumers who elect not to enroll before tonight’s deadline will have until February 15 to enroll and avoid a tax penalty.”

Connecticut joins New York (which had already announced their plan selection deadline extension being bumped out until 12/20) and Idaho (which originally said their deadline was 12/23, then said it was 11/15, and then also bumped it out to 12/20) in changing their January Coverage Deadline.

In Connecticut's case, however, tonight is still the deadline for selecting a plan; the 4 day extension is just for completing the enrollment process. In this sense it's more along the lines of the April 1-15 "overtime" period which most states (except, ironically, for Connecticut and Washington) allowed for last spring.

UPDATE: Meanwhile, Washington State's exchange just announced that they had to go offline this afternoon. Fortunately, WA's deadline was already 12/23 to begin with, though I'm guessing they're probably still having some level of enrollment spike today since many people may get confused between the different deadlines.

12:06 p.m.

Washington Healthplanfinder is currently unavailable to address the intermittent outages and slowness reported by users this morning. The system has been placed in maintenance mode to allow the IT team to troubleshoot the issues and restore better functionality. Updates will be posted here when available.

Over in Colorado, they have a heavy support line load, but are promising to help complete all enrollments started through today in time for January:

If you've started your enrollment but couldn't complete today, we will continue to work with you to ensure your coverage will be effective in January.We apologize, but are experiencing longer wait times at our Service Center today. If you're on hold, or awaiting a financial application determination, please use the time to compare your plan options and narrow your choices.

Maryland also reported heavy loads this morning, but their deadline isn't until the 18th anyway:

ALERT: We are experiencing call center connectivity issues this morning and are working to resolve ASAP.

UPDATE: And there goes Minnesota:

MNsure Extends Enrollment Deadline for January 1 Coverage to December 20 at 4:30 p.m.

December 15, 2014

MNSURE
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

MNsure Extends Enrollment Deadline for January 1 Coverage to December 20 at 4:30 p.m.

Decision made in response to insurance companies extending January 1 enrollment deadline, not because of technical issues

ST. PAUL, Minn.—In an effort to provide more time for Minnesotans who qualify for financial help available only through MNsure, the organization today announced it would extend the enrollment deadline for January 1 coverage.

Minnesotans must now enroll in coverage through MNsure by 4:30 p.m. on Saturday, December 20, to have their plan effective on January 1, 2015. The change comes at a time of historic interest in MNsure and as many health insurance companies recently extended their own enrollment deadlines for January 1 coverage.

“The best interest of the consumer is always first and foremost in our minds,” said CEO Scott Leitz. “We want to give Minnesotans that qualify for financial help as much time as possible to enroll in January 1 coverage.”

The enrollment deadline extension for January 1 coverage is not in response to any system issues or technical problems.

“The MNsure system continues to be stable and the vast majority of people coming through the system are doing so without issue,” said Leitz. “This change is simply to allow folks that qualify for financial help more time.”

Calls to the MNsure Contact Center on December 15 are averaging 1,600 per hour, a historically high number. Average wait time for callers is 20 minutes.

I find it rather amusing that they found it necessary to stress not once, but twice, that this is NOT due to technical problems at their end.

Although really, the 4:30pm cut-off is just strange.

OK, who's next?