The head of Rhode Island's online insurance marketplace says she's encouraged by the amount of interest consumers have shown in signing up for health insurance on the state’s newly launched health exchange.
It’s been up and running since October 1st to help uninsured Rhode Islanders and small businesses get the health coverage most are required to have by January 2014.
Healthsource RI leader Christy Ferguson briefed state senators on how it’s working last night. She says the exchange could help drive down health care costs if plenty of small businesses sign up.
HealthSource RI – Rhode Island’s online health insurance marketplace – has attracted more than 30,000 visits since launching on October 1st.
Nearly 40,000 people have called the exchange’s call center. And more than 33,000 have visited the web site.
But just a few thousand have taken the extra step to create an account. And less than 800 have actually completed an application – meaning they’ve selected a health plan, had their identity verified, and either paid for the plan or will soon.
Most of the civilian defense workers who were furloughed last week in Rhode Island because of the partial government shutdown are back to work.
U.S. Senator Jack Reed says the 300 workers furloughed by the Rhode Island National Guard have been brought back. The same goes for the 800 civilian defense workers who were furloughed at Naval Station Newport. Naval Station spokeswoman Lisa Rama said workers are glad to be back, even though they’re still not getting paid.
If you're uninsured or the health insurance your employer offers costs more than 9.5% of your income, you can now shop for a plan on Rhode Island's newly launched healthsourceri.com. That's the Ocean State's version of the online marketplaces now open for business across the country under the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare.