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Washington State Health Exchange Shuts Down on First Day of Open Enrollment

Washington State Health Exchange Shuts Down on First Day of Open Enrollment

Washington state’s online insurance exchange, Washington Healthplanfinder, shut down its site Saturday morning at 10:30 a.m. on the first day of the second round of open enrollment. 

At the onset of the day, the site seemed to be working, but then the automatic quality-control system alerted the exchange that the site was having problems with 2015 tax-credit estimates for customers wishing to enroll. By Saturday afternoon, the exchange listed a response saying, “Thank you for your patience as we work to ensure that customers receive correct information from Healthplanfinder.”

The exchange later issued a statement saying the problem should be fixed by 8 a.m. Sunday.

Washington Healthplanfinder had problems with its site in August; state Insurance Commissioner Mike Kreidler intervened by creating a limited special enrollment period so customers could obtain health coverage outside the exchange by opting for another health plan with the same carrier or choosing another carrier. That period lasted from Aug. 27 to Nov. 14. 

Kreidler said at the time, “This is a problem that has been around since the end of December. I am cautiously optimistic that the exchange is doing a much better job right now to resolve the problems, but there is no guarantee that they’re going to be gone as we go into open enrollment.”

The period for open enrollment for health insurance lasts until Feb. 15.

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