After 14 attempts, Franklinton man not sure if he has insurance
Posted January 1, 2014
Franklinton, N.C. — The Affordable Care Act’s major benefits began taking effect Wednesday, but some people say they still don’t know what coverage they have.
David Miller, of Franklinton, says he has applied, canceled and reapplied for health insurance for his family 14 times. After weeks of technical glitches, he was finally able to select a Blue Cross Blue Shield plan that would cover him, his wife and twin sons. However, he still encountered problems.
“We got to the very last step. We had it all set up, and when we hit the confirm button, then another technical glitch prevented us from being able to complete the process,” Miller said, adding that he has no idea if he and his family are covered. “Every time we think we’re getting close, then there’s another technical glitch, as they call it.”
The family will soon have to buy new insulin for one of their sons, Ian, who has Type I diabetes. His insulin costs $300 per vial with no insurance. Miller says it’s not just the medicine cost that he’s worried about – the bigger concern is not having the security of health insurance coverage if their son is hospitalized again.
“We’re at risk if we go to the hospital, because having a major scare with his diabetes, we’re completely on the hook for everything,” he said.
Miller says he called Blue Cross Blue Shield and was told that his application has not been forwarded to them. He says he calls the Healthcare.gov helpline about every other day and regularly spends two to three hours on the phone waiting for and then talking with service representatives and their supervisors who are unable to tell him his status or how to proceed.
“It’s extremely frustrating. I can’t imagine that any organization can work treating people like that without having answers, without having anybody you can turn to to get an answer,” Miller said.
Miller, who owns a small roofing business and is Internet savvy, says he does qualify for a federal subsidy, which is why he's going through Healthcare.gov. Yet, when he calls the help line, he says their default answer is to start a new application, which he has done 14 times.
Miller says he plans to be back on the phone Thursday, trying to get answers about his family’s health insurance coverage.