banner
Health Team

Enrollment website frustrates uninsured Holly Springs man

Posted December 18, 2013
Updated December 24, 2013

Map Marker  Find News Near Me

— Despite recent upgrades to HealthCare.gov, some Triangle residents said the process of enrolling for health insurance under the Affordable Care Act remains a frustrating proposition.

Ron Colovi of Holly Springs has been without health insurance for four years, so he eagerly went to the online marketplace to sign up for coverage for him, his wife and their 14-year-old son. He said he was disappointed at what he found.

"I've done a couple of things and basically found out the policies are too much a month. I can't afford it, Colovi said.

Based on his household income, the website told him his son has to be enrolled in CHIP, the state Children's Health Insurance Program. That means that Colovi wouldn't have to purchase coverage for him, but plans available for Colovi and his wife ran $627.64 to $860.70 a month.

Because their annual income is $34,000, the couple should be eligible for a federal subsidy to offset much of that premium. The calculator on HealthCare.gov indicates that they would pay no more than $156 a month for coverage.

Colovi said he's repeatedly called the HealthCare.gov help line and keeps getting different answers.

"The marketplace people say, basically, 'You're getting, you are not eligible for subsidy because your son already gets a subsidy through the state,'" he said.

Ron Colovi of Holly Springs Fed up with HealthCare.gov, man to forgo insurance

WRAL News called the marketplace helpline Wednesday and described Colovi's situation. The operator said the Colovis should qualify for a subsidy and that he should delete his application and start over.

When Colovi called the helpline, another operator told him the application cannot be deleted until his request goes through the "Advanced Resolution Center."

He said he's fed up and will likely go without health insurance.

"It's frustrating. (You) either put food on table or have a place to live or do without health insurance. I've chosen to do without the health insurance and pay the penalty," he said.

Under the Affordable Care Act, most people are required to have health coverage starting next year or face a tax penalty of 1 percent of annual income or $95 per person, whichever is higher. That penalty will increase in subsequent years.

Update (Dec. 23, 2013): Colovi was able to start a new application with the help of a trained HealthCare.gov navigator, found that he does qualify for a federal subsidy and enrolled his family for insurance coverage.

14 Comments

This story is closed for comments.

Oldest First
View all
  • snowl Dec 26, 2013

    @IPayYouPay....This guy also refused to purchase health insurance from his long time employer.

  • IPayYouPay Dec 19, 2013

    This guy was given help and he still refused it. Then I, as a paying person, refuse to pay for his health care needs when he goes to the hospital for help. He should be refused medical help because he was given a chance. HE QUALIFIES FOR SUBSIDIES AND WON'T PURSUE IT! SHAME ON HIM!

  • jdraleigh Dec 18, 2013

    Yes, it must be frustrating to him. But even if it takes him days of work to get this straightened out, he may end up with a very good deal.

    I saw an excellent political cartoon: A guy camped out in front of WalMart for 4 days before Black Friday, saying it's worth it to get a cheap TV; the next frame showed the same guy at his computer, saying 4 hours was too much trouble for getting health insurance, so he was giving up.

    Before Obamacare, this man had no health insurance. Good chance he'll have a better deal now. A few hours, or even more, of frustration is not that great a price to pay.

  • junkmail5 Dec 18, 2013

    The man is quoted as saying he will probably never get health insurance -timexliving

    Yes...because he got conflicting information from 2 customer service reps he will NEVER get insurance.

    Or, since he's still got over 3 months to avoid the penalty, he could just wait a little longer and try again.

    But I guess that's crazy.

    I'll happily agree he shouldn't be HAVING the trouble in the first place... the rollout has been awful.... but the crazy doom and gloom nonsense over it is just as bad.

    Nothing worked initially. Sebelius should've resigned (or been fired over it) among other people.

    But now you've got tens of thousands signing up daily.

    That's a significant improvement.

    There'll be more improvements over time.

    Including this guys issue being worked and, enabling him to get affordable health insurance for the first time in YEARS.

    Should it be EASIER? Sure.

    But at least he'll eventually be able to get it.

    If he keeps trying anyway.

  • Just the facts mam Dec 18, 2013

    Blame Senator Hagan and Rep. Price for voting to dismantle our healthcare system!

  • Ex-Republican Dec 18, 2013

    Probably because, as YOU leave out, the VERY NEXT PARAGRAPH says otherwise.

    "The operator said the Colovis should qualify for a subsidy"

    1. SHOULD qualify is a very long way from WILL qualify.

    2. The man is quoted as saying he will probably never get health insurance. GO BACK AND READ THE STORY.

    3. "the system hasn't got all the bugs worked out yet.
    the system hasn't got all the bugs worked out yet."

    It's been nearly THREE MONTHS!!!

  • Danny22 Dec 18, 2013

    If he thinks the website is bad, just wait till he sees how the obamacare program works.

  • junkmail5 Dec 18, 2013

    You conveniently leave out the rest of the story. The man called someone with ObamaCare and said he wasn't eligible. -timexliving

    Probably because, as YOU leave out, the VERY NEXT PARAGRAPH says otherwise.

    "The operator said the Colovis should qualify for a subsidy"

    So yeah, the issue is the system hasn't got all the bugs worked out yet.

    Because based on what's in the actual law, he should pay no more than $156 for insurance he hasn't been able to afford in years.

    That's a GOOD thing.

    Meanwhile, everyone else is waiting for the other shoe to drop when employer based health plans are cancelled by the millions starting next month.
    timexliving

    That doesn't even make sense.

    There's literally NOTHING changing next month that'd cause that.

    Further- employer plans are negotiated between insurer and employers, they don't "cancel" them like individual policies.

  • Ex-Republican Dec 18, 2013

    "The calculator on HealthCare.gov indicates that they would pay no more than $156 a month for coverage"" junkmail

    You conveniently leave out the rest of the story. The man called someone with ObamaCare and said he wasn't eligible.

    "He said he's fed up and will likely go without health insurance."

    Meanwhile, everyone else is waiting for the other shoe to drop when employer based health plans are cancelled by the millions starting next month.

  • junkmail5 Dec 18, 2013

    This has to do with a President that is bent on destroying the middle class-mikeyfan5600

    and yet as you can see from the story, this middle class family will be getting very affordable healthcare for the first time in years once they shake the bugs out of his application....

    "Because their annual income is $34,000, the couple should be eligible for a federal subsidy to offset much of that premium. The calculator on HealthCare.gov indicates that they would pay no more than $156 a month for coverage"

More...