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Top 3 Health Plan Game Changers of 2013

Margaret Dick Tocknell, for HealthLeaders Media, December 11, 2013

2. The Launch of the Federal Health Insurance Exchange
More than 2.8 million people tried to access healthcare.gov, on launch day (Oct.1). Their efforts were met with long, frustrating waits, security concerns, and inaccurate data. In short, the launch was a mess.

Two months later the system is not quite humming along but it is showing improvement. Bloomberg reports that the 800,000 people accessed the site one day last week. Around 100,000 successfully enrolled in a health plan during the month of November.

Health plan executives are cautiously optimistic about the online marketplace. Many are participating at a decidedly modest level. Humana, for instance has offerings in 14 states where it already sells insurance products. UnitedHealthcare has a presence in 12 exchanges.

With millions of uninsured people potentially enrolling in HIX this year, insurers see the demand for medical care exploding. Insurance executives say it is better to let those folks get all that care (and costs) behind them before they step in.

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