Our 4th baby was born December 29, 2014 and we received a letter that month saying our 2014 plan did not meet The Affordable Care act qualifications so I quickly signed up for a family plan through eHealthInsurance.com. It was very expensive at $982.13 per month so I started researching cheaper options and learned that we could get subsidies through the Maryland Health Exchange.
I signed up for MD Exchange mid-January naively thinking it would go through instantly and I could cancel my expensive EHealth plan and not put the baby on that plan. I was so wrong. After filling out all paperwork for our family, the site locked me out and my application froze. I could not get back in. The following is my futile attempts to get someone to help resolve my case.
1/28 - called Maryland Health Connection and explained the problem, was told my issue could not be resolved that day as it was a technical issue but that they'd elevate my case.
The following are my attempts in February to resolve the MD Health coverage - the carrot was dangling at $658.02 for myself and my husband and $63 for all four kids = Total for family $721.02. Savings from EHealth plan $261.11
2/6 – called Maryland Health Connection, was told my case was escalated again.
2/11 – called Maryland Health Connection, 23 minute wait time before live person answered, total call time 53 minutes while person put me on hold repeatedly to check notes, take smoke break, consult management and finally say they could do nothing.
Realized that the plan I had signed up for at the beginning of January was an HMO and that would not work for my travel plans so now I wanted to change the plan and I was still locked out of the system!
2/12 – called Maryland Health Connection, 20 minute wait time before live person answered, total call time one hour and 16 minutes and I attempted to explain that I needed to change the plan I had originally signed up for. Was told my case was being escalated.
Realized that calling two days in a row might be excessive so waited until later in the month for next call.
2/18 - got frustrated with waiting and complained on Twitter. Someone actually wrote me back and asked if they could help resolve the problem. I figured I wasn't getting anywhere with the phone calls so why not!
2/20/15 - called Maryland Health Connection, 19 minutes 30 seconds wait time, nothing resolved.
2/26/15 - Twitter MD Exchange gave me the option to change plans after I expressed the need for a PPO.
2/26/15 - At this point we suddenly we got temporary cards in the mail for the 3 older kids but nothing for the baby!
2/26/15 – called Maryland Health Connection, 25 minute wait time,
was told there is nothing they can do for baby or parent cards but to try calling State Medicaid since they issue the health cards.
2/26/15 - called state Medicaid and they were able to issue a number for baby and give it to me by phone.
I realized I needed to continue coverage with EHealth for both adults since the Exchange was not forthcoming in when our application would be resolved but at least I could take the kids off the plan since they were obviously now covered by the Exchange. This would take another month for EHealth to accomplish so I had double coverage which could get us into a lot of trouble if we had any medical issues that month as both parties would fight over who's responsible. Fortunately we had nothing come up.
3/3 - Twitter MD Exchange asked what date I wanted PPO coverage to start. Considering I had already paid EHealth for March coverage I confirmed 4/1 start date.
Yeah for Twitter! I then proceeded to finally cancel our expensive EHealth plan because I finally had confirmation that a new plan would be starting on April 1st!
So all my efforts to save $261.11 per month had resulted in multiple plans, a $2,204.56 bill that no one could seem to void and I had already canceled our EHealth plan! Good think I'm not the suicidal type! At this point I needed a few days to calm down before calling anyone back.