It works - the results are very positive, with almost 12,000 people being determined eligible over the weekend.
HCFA's canvassing operation hit some 6,600 doors over the weekend, exceeding our goal.
Here's highlights from the state's release that accompanied the dashboard, including the HCFA statement towards the end:
NEARLY 12,000 INDIVIDUALS & FAMILIES SUCESSFULLY DETERMINED ELIGIBLE FOR ACA HEALTH INSURANCE VIA MAHEALTHCONNECTOR.ORG
4,948 immediately enrolled in MassHealth coverage, 6,972 qualify for Health Connector plans, set to take next steps of shopping, enrolling
BOSTON – Monday, November 17, 2014 – In the first two full days of Open Enrollment 2015, the new Massachusetts Health Insurance Exchange (“MA HIX”) website successfully determined 11,920 individuals and families eligible for Affordable Care Act (ACA) health insurance.
Over the weekend, the revamped Exchange attracted a total of 57,208 visitors and enrolled 4,948 into immediate ACA-compliant MassHealth coverage in real-time, a function last year’s website was never able to complete. The remaining 6,972 individuals and families were successfully determined eligible for Health Connector insurance plans. They are now able to take the next steps of shopping for quality, affordable insurance, enrolling in the plans of their choice and paying their first-month premiums, all online in a seamless end-to-end process. 3,600 individuals and families have already selected their plans and 137 have paid their first bill, five weeks in advance of the Dec. 23 deadline to take action for Jan. 1, 2015 coverage.
“The website was stable, reliable and it did exactly what we built it to do: serve as a tool to connect Massachusetts residents to the health and economic benefits of ACA coverage,” said Maydad Cohen, the Governor’s Special Assistant for Project Delivery. “Now it’s up to us to build on the strong performance of the first two days, make sure every consumer using the site or calling the call centers enjoys the smoothest experience possible and finish critical IT upgrades scheduled for December.”
Cohen made his remarks while releasing the MA HIX project’s first daily dashboard measuring project performance. The dashboards – which going forward will capture daily statistics Tuesday-Friday and weekly data every Monday – are consistent with Governor Patrick and Cohen’s commitment to transparency, a project hallmark ever since the Governor put a single person in charge of the website turnaround and brought in new IT vendors at the beginning of 2014.
“This system is new to consumers, front line assisters and the market. Everyone’s comfort-level is going to grow day-by-day,” said Cohen. “On day one, we experienced higher call volumes in the morning because of some kinks we needed to work out on the operational side of the project. We took some swift steps – including adding 60 call center representatives and updating our Getting Started Guide with helpful tips – to be responsive and were ultimately able to reduce wait times from an average of 20 minutes to zero.”
In addition to call wait times, some consumers reported issues stemming from account creation and identity verification system requirements. Everyone, regardless of whether they previously created a Health Connector account and log-in, must set up a new account in order to access the new online system for 2015 coverage opportunities. Additionally, the ACA incorporates several program integrity measures, including requiring all states to confirm a consumer’s identity. If Massachusetts applicants encounter challenges with this part of the application, they can send the Health Connector certain identity verification documents to help advance the application process.
The Massachusetts Operations Command Center, the project’s technical and operational epicenter, opened for its third straight day at 7 a.m. Monday morning. The center, which houses over 100 IT, policy and business operations officials from the state, Optum, hCentive, Dell and Maximus, is responsible for providing constant systems monitoring, identifying issues that will impact consumers and the marketplace and developing and implementing solutions. Going into the first full weekday of Open Enrollment, the Commonwealth and its vendors will have over 500 customer service agents on the phones and processing applications, an increase of 370 from the weekend.
“I depend on the Health Connector for my health insurance. The online transaction was quick, the choices were broad and, for my money, I have much better coverage in 2015 than prior years,” said Jane Kramer, 58 years old, Lexington, Massachusetts