Side-stepping the Affordable Care Act website?

DELRAY BEACH, Fla. -  Back on October 1, Delray Beach resident Josh Benson logged onto www.healthcare.gov hoping to find a health care plan suitable for him.

"We thought it was going to be easy because the government put up a website and it doesn't work," he said. The 27 year old uninsured Type 1 diabetic took a different approach Wednesday night, trying comply with the Affordable Care Act in person.

Benson was guided by so-called 'navigators' at a health insurance and enrollment event hosted by Democratic State Senator Maria Sachs.

"This is the old fashioned way," said Sachs. "People to people talking to each other."

Some believe that old-fashioned way may be better than the high-tech and low-return www.healthcare.gov. Since it went online, only 27,000 Americans actually enrolled through the website.

"I think right now people are confused," said Sachs.

"You're hurting the people. And I'm one of the people," said Robert Dodds, 66, of Delray Beach. He, too, had questions and hopes about signing up for a plan. "Any help I can get, I'm looking for it," he said.

By night's end, Benson said, he did make progress. He said he applied and enrolled with the help of a pen, paper and a person - not his computer. "I certainly think that people are getting frustrated," he said. "But I hope that they wouldn't give up."

U.S. Health and Human Services officials say the numbers will improve with a "fully-active" www.healthcare.gov by the end of the month.


 

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