@patriciaborns If you think creating an account on healthcare.gov is hard online, imagine the frustration of the government employees who were hired to help consumers do that and more.
"In a hurry?" asks healthcare.gov at the "Please wait" page, suggesting you might want to call the toll-free help line 1-800-318-2596 instead. Since it's launch on Oct. 2, this Healthwatch reporter has.
Many Floridians besides Healthwatch have reported the sticking point for enrolling on healthcare.gov has been the security questions they must answer to set up an account. The system returns an "invalid format" or "unable to set up account" message.
Near midnight on Oct. 3, after repeated failures, Healthwatch " connected with a chat agent on healthcare.gov who suggested trying when volume was lighter during "off hours."
But, asked if it's possible to use the marketplace at any hour, a live healthcare.gov phone agent admitted, "Probably not."
The agent said he was hired to work the night shift helping people create accounts, see if they qualify for a subsidy and enroll in a health plan --" everything up to paying for it, which for security purposes each person does on their own."
But "No, I haven't enrolled anyone. I can't get to that part of the system," the agent said.
At mid-day Friday, Florida's marketplace is still balking at the security question point and a toll-free phone agent we spoke with said she can't access the system at this time.
How are you doing out there, any luck? Tweet us @HeraldHealth.