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By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

12/12/2013 (4 months ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

State spent $300 million on state-based exchange; roughly $7 million per enrollment

Fiercely Democratic and formerly hailed as a model for President Obama's health care law, the state of Oregon registered only 44 people for insurance through November. This in spite of spending over $300 million on its state-based exchange; roughly $7 million per enrollment.

While the site has vastly improved since then and the Obama administration's numbers tell only part of Oregon's enrollment story, the HHS report said just 44 residents signed up for private insurance through Cover Oregon from Oct. 1 to Nov. 30.

While the site has vastly improved since then and the Obama administration's numbers tell only part of Oregon's enrollment story, the HHS report said just 44 residents signed up for private insurance through Cover Oregon from Oct. 1 to Nov. 30.

Article Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

12/12/2013 (4 months ago)

Published in Politics & Policy

Keywords: Oregon, Obamacare, Cover Oregon, signups


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - As a matter of fact, the state of Oregon had the fewest sign-ups in the nation. These embarrassingly low numbers were reported by the Department of Health and Human Services.

Called, Cover Oregon, the program's roll out has been widely criticized. Among numerous complaints, Oregonians say they can't enroll in coverage they find on the Web site. They can learn about the plans and comparison shop, but unlike Americans elsewhere they must fill out old-fashioned paper applications to sign up for the policies they like.

Cover Oregon's problems are highlighted by the state's dismal enrollment data for October and November is just the long in a series of woes.

While the site has vastly improved since then and the Obama administration's numbers tell only part of Oregon's enrollment story, the HHS report said just 44 residents signed up for private insurance through Cover Oregon from Oct. 1 to Nov. 30.

These minuscule number of registrations is undermining undercuts two major defenses of Obamacare from its supporters.

One argument in their favor was that state-based exchanges were performing a lot better than the federal healthcare.gov website servicing 36 states. However, Oregon's Web site problems have forced the state to rely on paper applications to sign up participants.

The Obama administration has attributed the troubled roll out of Obamacare to the obstruction of Republican governors who wanted to see the law fail as well as a lack of funding.

Oregon is a fiercely Democratic state that embraced Obamacare early and with open arms. Outreach efforts included a folk-style music video featuring a singer playing an acoustic guitar against a colorful and scenic backdrop. This approach won kudos from Obamacare supporters.

And the more than $300 million in federal grant money the state received to build and promote its exchange topped all but two other states - the much more populous New York and California.




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