Colorado Obamacare exchange “Connect for Health” on life support
DENVER—Yesterday afternoon, the board of the problem-plagued Colorado Obamacare exchange, Connect for Health, voted to raise fees for health insurance consumers on and even off the exchange in order to fund its expenses, which are double that of projections.
According to the Denver Post, the exchange “raised the fee on 2016 plans purchased through its marketplace from the current 1.4 percent of premiums to 3.5 percent, the same rate charged on the federal exchange.”
Earlier this week, Colorado health exchange managers made their request to board members, which resulted in general shock and controversy.
“They are charging people for using the exchange, and for not using the exchange. Either way they end up filling their pockets with your money. Coloradans are paying for a very expensive life support plan for a very sick exchange. It’s not going to work,” said Jonathan Lockwood, incoming executive director for Advancing Colorado. “The exchange is apparently going to cost at least double what it was supposed to – just one more example of how Obamacare is failing.”
Connect for Health proponents claimed that the exchange could operate on about $26 million a year. Newly delivered estimates say Connect for Health needs to spend at least $50 million to $54 million a year to survive.Ellen Roberts, a state senator and member of the oversight committee for the exchange said in a committee hearing on Wednesday, according to Health News Colorado, that the exchange is “making regular folks of all types pay for something they are getting no value out of personally.”Additionally, board member Davis Fensler even said that the exchange is looking at, “burning cash” and explained that they have a negative-cash flow.Last year, the exchange awarded a tabled-request of a $14,000 bonus and 2.5 percent pay hike to former-exchange CEO Patty Fontneau right after the legislative session ended and right before she left to work for Cigna. The exchange has been problem plagued facing issues with management, performance, customer service and finances.