As most people know, President Obama promised that everyone could keep their old insurance if they liked it. Although most people are able to keep their old insurance, some people certainly are not and the president has gotten major political heat for this. Today, the Obama administration responded to the critics. The Washington Post WonkBlog reports:
What the White House announced today, under political pressure, is a temporary step back from that policy stance. The Obama administration will allow insurance companies to renew policies that do not meet health law standards through the end of 2014, senior White House officials told reporters on a call this morning.
So problem solved, right? The “solution” may have created more problems. Robert Laszewski weighs in:
This means that the insurance companies have 32 days to reprogram their computer systems for policies, rates, and eligibility, send notices to the policyholders via US Mail, send a very complex letter that describes just what the differences are between specific policies and Obamacare compliant plans, ask the consumer for their decision — and give them a reasonable time to make that decision — and then enter those decisions back into their systems without creating massive billing, claim payment, and provider eligibility list mistakes.
All by January 1.
Additionally, healthy individuals may be the ones most likely to opt for their old plan, further driving up premiums in the exchange.