I applied in early October at the Covered California website, part of the Obamacare program.
There was one glitch. I'll explain it below.
Friday my wife and I got a letter telling us we had been accepted into the program.
As of January 1 we'll be paying about $1100 for better coverage than we have now for about $1950. We're saving more than $800. And we got it through an Obamacare website.
So I must ask, is it possible that after the glitches were first reported NO news agency has actually done any investigating on their own?
A LITTLE BACKGROUND FIRST
When I tried to sign up for Obamacare in early October I found enough ambiguity that in the end I wasn't exactly sure if I had signed up or not. I figured I'd wait until things settled down a bit.
The ambiguity was that the home page of the site told me that I'd first learn about what kind of coverage is available, and then I'd have a chance to apply. Just click here. Only then, instead of getting the informational pages, I was taken right to the signup system. I've worked on a lot of websites, I've signed up for lots of stuff on others, and I knew this was a serious glitch. That's why, though I did complete the application, I never felt sure that I had really applied. I figured I'd try again when word got out that everything was working well.
But then, on Friday, November 1 we got a letter in the mail: my application was approved and we could get health insurance through the ACA. It turns out that I had really applied, and less than a month later my wife and I were accepted into the program.
CONCERNING THAT GLITCH
I applied for Obamacare through Covered California, but a friend applying to the New York version of the program experienced the identical problem - he was forced to apply before he knew what he was applying before. However, he then actually listened to every minute of the congressional hearing concerning the website, and he found out what the problem was.
It turns out that the original flow chart stipulated that visitors would first learn about the various offerings of the Affordable Care Act, and then they would be taken to the sign-up page. Then suddenly, out of nowhere, less than two months before launch, some bonehead functionary in Health and Human Services decided on his or her own to demand that it work the other way around, that people should be forced to sign up before they were allowed to know what they were signing up for. Stupid, both for making that decision and for forcing the programmers on this massive project to change things around. Well, they changed the process around in time time for launch, EXCEPT for the text on the home page that tells you - now incorrectly - that when you click the button you'll get information, and you'll be able to apply later. Dumbass mistake, but not horrific. As a guy who has written dozens or hundreds of home pages, I could fix the text problem in one minute. Only Fox News could make this sound like a horrible calamity.
Well, that appears to be one of the main reasons that users have felt frustrated. If I hated Obama I'd be bitching about it, too. Instead I relaxed, knowing everything would get ironed out.
Still, all it took was about 40 minutes to sign up. Try signing up on the US Copyright website in 40 minutes. I have had to use that site for years, and I therefore know what hell must really be like. 40 minutes would be heaven.
HERE'S THE GREAT NEWS
And as I mention in the opener, on Friday, November 1 we got a letter in the mail: my application was approved and we could get health insurance through the ACA.
As I also mentioned, we're currently paying more than $1900 per month for our health insurance, with a large deductible for hospital care and a not-small one for doctor visits. My wife and I are both 62, and we do go to doctors.
My wife, who is simply better at navigating such thickets, called the number on the acceptance notice. Within 20 minutes she had us signed up for the 'silver' plan, in which the coverage is better than what we're getting under our current insurance. (She said it would have taken less time, but the nice person at the Obamacare office experienced - alas - a few minutes of trouble with the computer network.)
Our income was not low enough to qualify us for subsidies, but $1100 per month instead of $1900 per month sounds like heaven to me.
Go, sign up ASAP. Let your reasonable friends know just how easy and life-changing the signup was for me.
All I have is anecdotal evidence, my own anecdote, and it's absolutely true. I can't possibly be the only person who has had this good of an experience. I'd love to tell it to CBS News, but they seem to be too intent to "balance" the ugly stuff they reported about the GOP during the shutdown, with an Obama "catastrophe" that isn't so big at all.
Let your friends, your co-workers and your family, including the befuddled wingnuts, know that they are being lied to by lazy and/or malevolent media. The system isn't a catastrophe AT ALL. The ones who have bought the Fox argument that not signing up for Obamacare is patriotic are probably beyond help.
Heck, if you know republicans that aren't imbeciles tell them to sign up and let the other republicans be the suckers.
By the way, I ALWAYS call it Obamacare. I want Obama's name, a great Democratic president's name, to be attached to this fantastic program until some future Democratic president finally gives us a single payer Medicare For Everyone healthcare system.