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HealthCare Checkup

The Seattle Times health-care team tracks the local impact of the Affordable Care Act.

December 14, 2013 at 10:46 AM

Health exchange trying to reach thousands affected by tax-credit mistakes

The Washington Health Benefit Exchange has spent the past month trying to reach thousands of people who were affected by a miscalculation of their tax credits when they applied back in October for health coverage through the state’s online insurance marketplace, Healthplanfinder.

Exchange officials say they have sent correspondence to about 9,000 people who were told they qualified for a larger tax credit than they are actually eligible to receive based on their income level and household size. The difference was about $100 a month, on average.

Exchange officials say they have also made personal calls to people most affected by the error.

They were particularly eager to reach about 3,000 to 4,000 people who had not only completed an application on Healthplanfinder but also selected a plan and submitted payment based on faulty information about their tax credit.

Those people have to go back into their Healthplanfinder account and indicate whether they want to keep the plan they chose before or change to a different plan in light of their recalculated tax credit.

But about 1,400 people who need to take that action still have not done so, according to Exchange Chief of Staff Pam McEwan.

Those people are quickly running out of time. They need to take action by Dec. 23 if they still want coverage to start Jan. 1, 2014.

Efforts will continue to try to reach those 1,400 people, McEwan told the Exchange Board during its monthly meeting Thursday in SeaTac.

“We are in the process of simply nagging them,” McEwan said. “They’ve all been called, and we will call them again. We have sent them correspondence. We will send them more correspondence. We want to just push them forward until they take the action they need to take.”

0 Comments | Topics: Pam McEwan, Washington Health Benefit Exchange, Washington Healthplanfinder

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