Obamacare applications get shorter
April 30th, 2013
09:24 AM ET
12 months ago

Obamacare applications get shorter

(CNN) – Applications for health insurance coverage under President Barack Obama's sweeping healthcare law will go from 21 pages to three, according to a White House official, who said the change was part of an effort to simplify the implementation of Obamacare.

"The President wants the Administration to be as flexible and nimble as possible in implementing the ACA law," the White House official said, referring to the law's official name, the Affordable Care Act. "It is a complex undertaking, and it is particularly important to the success of the law that enrollment into the Markteplaces be as user friendly as possible."

Starting this fall, the some 15 million Americans who buy health insurance on the individual market will be able to shop for and enroll in health insurance through state-based exchanges, with coverage taking effect in January. By 2016, some 24 million people will get insurance through the exchanges, while another 12 million will continue to get individual coverage outside of them, the Congressional Budget Office estimates.

A draft application to receive insurance on the exchanges topped out at 21 pages, the White House official said, which prompted criticism that it was overly complicated.

"Obviously, the drafting of the Marketplace application is just one small piece of ACA implementation," the official continued. "But we hope that people concerned with implementation will view this corrective action as a positive step and a demonstration of our interest in taking whatever actions we can to make the law work well for all."

The Affordable Care Act was passed in 2010 with loud opposition from Republicans, who have repeatedly tried to repeal the measure in Congress. The centerpiece of the law, an individual requirement to obtain health care insurance, was upheld as constitutional by the Supreme Court in 2012.


Filed under: Health care • President Obama
soundoff (148 Responses)
  1. Taylordactyl

    Its time to start treating this country like a community and not like a business. Obviously such big changes are going to hurt and they will be met with opposition because they hurt, at first. Hopefully, in time, we can reach the levels of social comfort and communal well being that the rest of the Westernized World has seen for decades.

    April 30, 2013 11:56 am at 11:56 am |
  2. Seola

    This is NOT limited to the GOP. Many Dems have supported dismantling several key pieces because they openly admit they didn't read the bill and had no idea even half the provisions were in it. And the Dems made a fuss when the GOP railed Pelosi for saying they needed to pass it to see what was in it? Please. In fact, several Dems now say they would never have voted for it if they'd actually known that it was more than just exchanges. The housing capital tax hits seniors especially hard, the med device tax hits major industries in Dem states...

    April 30, 2013 12:05 pm at 12:05 pm |
  3. Ray E. (Georgia)

    Anyone that thinks Obama Care will result in lower costs for medical care, I have bridge in Brooklyn I want to sell you. There is a cost somewhere. You may not see it right away or directly but you are going to see it. One place is less employment oppertunities. Have you seen employment improve to any extent these last 4 yeaers? Another is the rising National Debt. Again the Liars want to raise the debt limit. Not to mention the nearly 50 million on Food Stamps. If you think the Liberal way is making things better take a look at what happened in the old Soviet Union. The state controlled everything. There was no free lunch there and there is no free lunch here. As you know, it finally collapsed. Have fun.

    April 30, 2013 12:07 pm at 12:07 pm |
  4. Greenspam

    3 pages.. that's still 2 pages longer than the application form Wall Street companies have to fill out to get $B of government bailout money!

    April 30, 2013 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  5. Ray E. (Georgia)

    Dan,
    If everybody just waited for someone else to all the hard work, how long do you think it would last??

    April 30, 2013 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm |
  6. CLEAR ONE

    This is addressed to seriously. You are viewing this from an industry perspective. Number one you are lucky to have a job because if the health care act could have been drafted in its purest form we would have eliminated the health insurance industry and went to a single payer system ie (health care for all) The whole point is that as long as health care is tied to the capitol system insurance companies will charge whatever they can get away with. They are a for profit organization and do not exist to help consumers only to make a profit. Don't you get it health care should be for all not just the well to do.

    April 30, 2013 12:11 pm at 12:11 pm |
  7. Greenspam

    To Ray E... wow.. $50M food stamps... that's 1/10 the cost of 1 day of Iraq war... why did you support Iraq War?

    April 30, 2013 12:12 pm at 12:12 pm |
  8. Greenspam

    Seola: many Republicans are openly saying that they watched Fox News and voted according to Fox News without reading what's in the bill either!

    April 30, 2013 12:13 pm at 12:13 pm |
  9. mom

    Obama has never known what he is doing and he never will. The only thing he excels at is constant deception which is intended to cause the destruction of everything that made the US a great nation. He truly does not have a clue on many important things and our country has made a disastrous mistake choosing him.

    April 30, 2013 12:16 pm at 12:16 pm |
  10. MJ

    Even when Conservatives have no idea what they are talking about, they still never stop talking. an endless spewing out fox news made up facts.
    "Ignorance is preferable to error, and he is less remote from the truth who believes nothing than he who believes what is wrong."
    Thomas Jefferson

    April 30, 2013 12:18 pm at 12:18 pm |
  11. penjim

    @Taylordactyl – that "level of social comfort and communal well being... in the rest of the Westernized world" has led to the complete collapse of the European economy.

    April 30, 2013 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  12. The REAL Truth...

    There is one reason the Repugs are against ACA – there's NO PROFIT in preventive care. Preventive care is by far the cheapest approx. to healthcare. Trouble is Americans are generally considered the most un-healthy, overweight nation on the globe. Therefore, there's much dinero to be made on treatment instead of cure. Instead of reducing the factors influencing high-blood pressure, we treat the symptoms with drugs. If that drug causes side effects, we add another drug (and price tier) to offset that side effect and so on. It's ridiculous. Fix the root cause (diet / exercise) and the blood pressure issues go away. But remember, no providers – insurance co's, doctors, pharma's or facilities make any money of that. And THAT is (profit motive) the root cause of our ALL our healthcare issues in this country.

    PS: @Shaun – SS and Medicare has been a resounding SUCCESS for the last 70 yrs. Had Reagan not started the raiding of the surplus funds to offset the budget losses in Congress, it would be fully secured today. If Congress returned the more than $4.5 TRILLION in Us Treasury IOU's, SS wouldn't have an issue at all.

    April 30, 2013 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  13. 4JULY1776

    "Hopefully, in time, we can reach the levels of social comfort and communal well being that the rest of the Westernized World has seen for decades."

    Taylordactyl: By that do you mean the countries in Western Europe that are now hundred of billions in debt and heading toward bankruptcy?

    April 30, 2013 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  14. cedar rapids

    Seola you are spouting nonsense. I know its a popular repub talking point but everyone under the sun knows that when Pelosi said pass it to see what is in it, she was talking about all those doom and gloom merchants that were claiming the sky was going to fall if it passed, not that they shouldnt bother reading it before passing it.

    April 30, 2013 12:32 pm at 12:32 pm |
  15. 4JULY1776

    Seola: excellent point!

    In fact, a key Dem (SEN Max Baucus) now calls Obamacare "a train wreck."

    And he helped WRITE the law!

    April 30, 2013 12:32 pm at 12:32 pm |
  16. 4JULY1776

    Taylordactyl.....the problem with all programs that force "communal well being" is that invariably some people in the community do all the work, while others in the community enjoy all the benefits but contribute no productivity.

    April 30, 2013 12:34 pm at 12:34 pm |
  17. ghostriter

    "seriously"...I don't think you are in the industry. Not with your lingo.

    1st you said the poor wouldn't be able to afford it. Now you say they can, but you and I will pay for it. Since you are in the industry, can you explain to me how we aren't paying for it now. Because the very reason this came into play is that hospitals have to treat everyone and folks were skipping the paying part. Now, they will either be insured or pay a fine. Either way, they will pay. So, you can either pay before and let them get the less expensive healthcare or pay later for the more expensive healthcare.

    April 30, 2013 12:35 pm at 12:35 pm |
  18. Richard Long

    "Laser-beam focus on employment..." Businesses are dropping full-time employees to part-time hours/status because they can't afford the ObamaCare provisions. Other companies will transfer the costs to the consumer, resulting in higher prices.
    Bravo... barck! Bravo!!!

    April 30, 2013 12:36 pm at 12:36 pm |
  19. drewATX

    it needs to be postponed and re-written and then ratified by congress again.. even if it take 4 more years to do it. The current plan will bankrupt the country..

    April 30, 2013 12:40 pm at 12:40 pm |
  20. ghostriter

    Ray E., the number of those who MAY lose their jobs due to Obamacare aren't very high at all. Most companies already offer HC and small companies can get subsides. Or they pay the fine (which is less than actual coverage) and the employees get the subsidies.

    Oh, and once again, the folks on assistance started growing right after the recession. Blaming democrats for republican failures seems to be the MO of conservatives these days. Only the polls don't share your myopic views.

    April 30, 2013 12:41 pm at 12:41 pm |
  21. DARNELL

    FACT: Hard working people who actually pay for health ins will have their rates GO UP FROM 50% to 80%!! Thats right folks get ready to be paying for these lazy fools' "free" health care!!!

    April 30, 2013 12:42 pm at 12:42 pm |
  22. 4JULY1776

    Greenspam.....here's a question for you.....

    Yes, a Republican (George Bush) started the Iraq War where almost 6,000 Americans died.

    But then again, a Democrat (Lyndon Johnson) started the Vietnam War where almost 60,000 died, or roughly 10 times as many.

    So now....what do either of those facts have to do with the U.S. Govt passing a multi-trillion dollar entitlement known as "Obama-care" that even its own author (SEN Max Baucus) now considers to be a "train wreck"?

    April 30, 2013 12:42 pm at 12:42 pm |
  23. bep

    It takes a no brainer to not do a 23 page app. – how much has it cost the taxpayer to get to a 3 page form – As to Taylordactyl – maybe you should move someplace else if the Westernized world that you like – there is a reason people want to live here – yes we need to run the country like a business, it needs to be efficient – you cannot keep spending and taxing – in the real world people and business can only spend what they have and if you do not have you have to change your ways -

    April 30, 2013 12:43 pm at 12:43 pm |
  24. JesusFromBeyond

    @4July1776 you are touting about how Western Europe is billions of dollars in debt and how that's why we shouldn't follow their example... how about the TRILLIONS UPON TRILLIONS of debt we are in?

    April 30, 2013 12:44 pm at 12:44 pm |
  25. Fubarack

    I'll be the among the first to try it out. I had cheap insurance that I was gladly paying for, they cited Obama Care in getting rid of my plan. Been without for over a year. Jobs with insurance have disappeared,..why would an employer want to get involved in that, when someone else will do it. Ocare will implode fast, as 4 times the amount of people will sign up, than it can withstand, so get there early. lol
    My plan is the sooner it blows up, maybe they will at some point do a health care bill, that actually has anything to do with health care, instead of social justice. What a mess Obama has made.

    April 30, 2013 12:44 pm at 12:44 pm |
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