I’ve been using the words “exchange,” “marketplace” and “Covered California” interchangeably, as they are all synonyms in California. We’ll start off today’s post with some humor: Jimmy Kimmel demonstrating the power of language, and how much more education is really needed on the upcoming changes. Which do you favor — Obamacare or the Affordable Care Act?
There were reports from Covered California of five million (!) web site hits on Day One, but they retracted that estimate and revised to 645,000 according to the LA Times. The Mercury News reports on the ongoing problems with the Covered California web site, and I couldn’t even get on to set up an account this morning. Once again: if you are interested in signing up for coverage through the exchange, you are going to need help, and waiting a few weeks would be wise.
Just one more word of advice this morning: the only reason to sign up for coverage through the exchange is if you think you may qualify for a tax credit. If you are certain your 2014 household income will exceed the limits, you will likely be better off applying directly to a carrier. Every plan offered through Covered California is also available directly from the carrier – at the exact same price. No medical questions. Some carriers will offer more plan options than are available from Covered CA and you can avoid much of the lengthy application information about your income and employment that is required through the exchange.