High volume, long wait at California's health site

AP Photo/Rich PedroncelliEric Alvarez

AP Photo/Rich PedroncelliEric Alvarez

California's health insurance exchange is experiencing a high volume of users, leading to a sluggish website and long wait times as consumers make their final enrollment dash to avoid a tax penalty.

Midnight Monday marks the enrollment deadline under President Barack Obama's health reform law. Covered California, the state's insurance exchange, reported Monday that more than 1.2 million people have signed up for individual policies.

But the last-minute surge is slowing down the exchange's website and boosting the average wait time for those seeking help by phone to more than an hour.

Executive Director Peter Lee says officials have turned off the “preview plan” feature on the website to reduce congestion. The exchange also will ask consumers who start the enrollment process to return and finish their application later, when there is less traffic.

Californians who start the process by midnight will have until April 15 to complete their applications.

Affordable Care ActCaliforniaCalifornia NewsCovered CaliforniaPeter Lee

If you find our journalism valuable and relevant, please consider joining our Examiner membership program.
Find out more at www.sfexaminer.com/join/

Just Posted

A sign about proposed development of the bluff at Thornton State Beach in Daly City on Friday, Feb. 26, 2021. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
Retreat center proposed at popular state beach

Daly City residents oppose construction on ocean bluffs

Rev. Roland Gordon shows “The Great Cloud of Witnesses” collage mural at the Ingleside Presbyterian Church, which he began building in 1980.<ins> (</ins>
Rev. Roland Gordon preaches love in action

Pastor promotes peace, hope through art and prayer

San Francisco’s Buster Posey was back at the plate after sitting out last season due to the risk of COVID-19. (David Maialetti/Tribune News Service)
Giants struggle against Angels in first game of Spring Training

By Nick Zeller-Singh Nearly 1,000 fans gathered into a breezy Scottsdale Stadium… Continue reading

Basketball (Shutterstock)
SI alum Begovich gets his moment, but Stanford falls on Senior Day

MAPLES PAVILION — Generally speaking, Stanford’s home finale on Saturday afternoon, a… Continue reading

U.S. Attorney David Anderson announces federal firearms charges against two men for their roles in a March 2019 shooting outside the Fillmore Heritage Center in a news conference alongside SFPD staff at the Phillip Burton Federal Building on Thursday, Jan. 9, 2020. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
Departing U.S. attorney predicts corruption probe will continue

David Anderson shook up City Hall as top federal prosecutor

Most Read