STUDIO CITY (CBSLA.com) — Some customers are frustrated with glitches related to the Affordable Care Act.
San Fernando Valley resident Mathew Pauley, who was paying nearly $500 a month for health insurance, was thrilled when he received a letter in the mail from Covered California in mid-November, saying his application had been accepted.
“[It said], ‘I qualified. Congratulations, you qualify for Covered California.’ I thought it was great,” Pauley said.
Covered California informed Pauley his request for a Silver policy with Anthem Blue Cross had been approved, and he would receive a bill for less than $150 a month.
By late December, Pauley hadn’t received a bill or any acknowledgment from Anthem Blue Cross that he was a policyholder.
“I called Anthem and had to wait at least an hour and a half before I could get anyone on the phone. And, of course, they had no record of my application. They had no application; they said they hadn’t received it from Covered California. I had to call Covered California again and they transmitted it again a second time,” Pauley said.
Since late December, Pauley said he spent long hours on the telephone with Anthem Blue Cross.
“It could be a full-time job sitting on the phone when you’re on hold for an hour and a half,” he said.
Pauley said Anthem Blue Cross told him they’re tracking his case, even though they claim they’ve received no application for him from Covered California.
KCAL9’s Dave Bryan reports that on the Covered California website, however, it clearly states Pauley’s application has been accepted.
“I have a pre-existing condition. If I need to go to the hospital, if I need emergency care or anything, I really have no way of proving I’m insured. I have no policy cards, I have no booklet as to doctors I can choose from, I have nothing from Anthem Blue Cross,” Pauley said.
Pauley said the Obama administration took a pounding when the website broke down and people weren’t able to sign up, but now the ball’s in the private health insurance providers’ court and he’s not hearing any criticism about service breakdowns on their part.
In a statement, Darrel Ng, a spokesman from Anthem Blue Cross, said, “We apologize to Mr. Pauley for the delay. We are working with Covered California to get the necessary information to get him enrolled as soon as possible. Anthem has also extended the deadline to pay until January 31 for coverage retroactive to January 1.”