Bumpy Start for New Health Insurance Exchange - NBC Connecticut

Bumpy Start for New Health Insurance Exchange



    Connecticut residents are able to sign up for health insurance today as the health exchange opened. (Published Tuesday, Oct. 1, 2013)

    It was a bit of a bumpy start for Connecticut's new health insurance exchange. Glitches with the website slowed things down a bit Tuesday morning. At one point many people couldn't even log in to the new site.

    "It's not without bumps or areas that we're going to look back on and say what did we do this for but we got this up and running," said Kevin Counihan, CEO of Access Health CT.

    Open enrollment under Obamacare began Tuesday morning. By late afternoon 167 people had enrolled, 1900 called the call center and more than 28,000 visited the website.

    "We are ready," said Gov. Dannel Malloy. "We are open. We are actually signing people up."

    Elly Banos hasn't had insurance for over a year. It's why she came to an enrollment fair in New Britain on Tuesday.

    "It's been slow," said Banos. "But hopefully I can get out of here today with insurance."

    Access Health CT, which runs the exchange, blames the website issues on the high volume of traffic and new technology.

    "Yes, they will be worked out because there will be a number of glitches," said Counihan.

    On the marketplace you can choose from four insurers in both the group and individual plans.

    There are also three tiers of insurance: bronze, silver and gold. Some people will also qualify for subsidies.

    More than 9 percent of Connecticut residents are uninsured which amounts to more than 300,000 people. The state admits they're not going to get everyone insured overnight.

    "This is going to take several years," said Counihan. "It's going to take 4 to 5 years to come down to 2 percent."

    If you want to sign up or have questions visit:

    www.accesshealthct.com or call the toll-free hotline: 1-855-805-HEALTH