Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Health insurance mess averted

I've decided I'm not participating in this health insurance exchange nightmare. I'm just going to purchase the plan outside of the exchange that our current insurance company is offering. I gave the exchange a shot....but it's so F'd up...I'm staying away from it to save my sanity.

Here's what I've been through and didn't even sign up for a plan! The website was down 4 days last week, though over the weekend I was able to get online while it was up for a short time to review the plans offered again and really dig into the details of the plans. I realized I had not been actually "adding" DH's doctor, so I was thinking since his name showed up, he was on the plans, but what I actually had to do was click on him, then he'd be added and would show on each plan if he was participating. Turns out he was not participating on any of the plans I had chosen. Then I needed a plan that covers DS being out of the state or out of the county. The plans that covered that didn't cover DH's doctor or vice versa. Wonderful.

So, I emailed a friend of a friend who is a "navigator" for this mess and she told me I could pick different plans for DH and the kids, no problem. I had not actually registered for an account yet, but when she told me that I thought, ok, I'm good to go now to sign them all up. Finally yesterday the website was up and running and I sign up for an account. Get to the page to choose plans and it only lets me put them all on one plan! Plus, now the plan I wanted to put DH on was showing his doctor was not participating.ARGHH! Then it tells me that because DD is under 19 I also have to choose a dental plan for her - another $32 a month (if I want a plan w/our dentist) added, that I wasn't expecting. BUT, I already have dental insurance for her (and DS). Why am I forced to take their lesser plan? I saw no way to opt out of it with proof of other coverage. So, now my cost is up to $665 a month, but I can drop the kids from dental insurance (DS will just have to without until his new job insurance kicks in) and save $50 a month, so I'm down to $615 a month out of pocket. But I made a mess of the account trying to delete DH and thinking I'd put him on the non-exchange plan, instead. I called the plan directly that had over the weekend said DH's doctor was on, but now wasn't. She said he was on all their 3 plan levels being offered and not sure why the state exchange was showing him as not.

I emailed the navigator lady back to see if I could set up a time to talk with her and just have her get them all set up for me. She wants me to drive 30 miles to where she is (no thanks), but she also mentioned that the non-exchange plan I'm being offered by our current insurance company would also include dental for DD in the cost. I didn't realize that! I went back online and saw where pediatric dental is included in the $671 a month quoted for the 3 of them. So, back out the $50 a month I'm currently paying for dental and that brings my total montly cost down to $621......just a few dollars more than the exchange plan. I'm just putting them on that plan. They are already set up to automatically switch to that plan (unless I notify them to cancel), I'll only have to deal with one insurance company and NOT HAVE TO DEAL WITH THE EXCHANGE MESS!.  From what I am reading actually signing up for a plan (which I didn't get that far) is still being frought with error messages and peoples accounts are being debited now for their premiums, when they set up to come out later this month, so peoples bank accounts are being overdrawn, because they weren't expecting the withdrawals until after their next paycheck. People are enrolled, but it's all still being processed by the insurance companies, so while the exchange is saying they are covered, they really aren't set up yet.  Or they are being told a price when they sign up and then get a letter saying a  mistake was made, and this is what they are really going to pay.

I'm glad to cross this headache off my to-do list! Now I can focus on Christmas, shopping and DS being home in 4 days!


  1. Just another reason why my favorite saying is....."The most terrifying words in the English language are: I'm from the government and I'm here to help.” lolz

    Glad you got this done and it's over with....hopefully..... ;-)

  2. What a mess! Good thing you got it figured out.

  3. Oh, I'm so glad you finally figured it out. It was definitely a big mess!!