Enrollee Struggles to Confirm Coverage under ACA

By: Anna-Lysa Gayle Email
By: Anna-Lysa Gayle Email

Harrisonburg, Va. (WHSV) -- For the first time we are hearing from someone who has signed up on HealthCare.gov for coverage under the Affordable Care Act. Charlea Harris Ralston has been living without insurance for more than 7 years, due to pre-existing conditions.

"I ended up with endometriosis and it was just one thing after another," said Charlea Layne Harris Ralston, who enrolled on HealthCare.gov.

She signed up for coverage back in December on HealthCare.gov.

She said her insurance should've kicked in on January 1, 2014.

Harris Ralston is happy to finally be covered, because her health comes at a huge cost. She's still working to pay off medical bills from the past.

"It's over $25,000, I mean it's just a pile. That's not counting the health issues that my family has had," said Harris Ralston.

Right now, she has not received anything in the mail from her insurance company that proves she is officially covered.

"Anna-Lysa: And so, you haven't gotten a card? Charlea: "I have received nothing yet."

So, the question becomes, "Anna-Lysa: How do you know it's effective? Charlea: I, guess because you pay the payment."

Insurance agent Steve Flora said that's where things get a little tricky.

The ID card allows a provider to file a claim.

"Coverage is approved for January 1, 2014, but you're not in the system. So they can't verify that you're covered," said Flora.

His recommendation for anyone who has not received their insurance card is to call up the insurance company.

"And see what they'll say to her as well. It may be that the file has been held up," said Flora.

Something flora said could be due to glitches related to HealthCare.gov.

The site is responsible for transferring information to insurance carriers.

Despite the flaws with the system, Harris Ralston said she is happy she signed up.

"I'm thankful for it, it's been a long time coming," said Harris Ralston.

Flora also recommends verifying you have received a confirmation number from HealthCare.gov, if you signed up for coverage on the site.

Harris Ralston said she has received a reference ID from HealthCare.gov.

Steve Flora with Blue Ridge insurance service also recommends waiting a few more days before panicking about your insurance card if you haven't received one.

He said Thursday while he tried to sign up a few people there were still issues with the site.

One of his clients had to mail a copy of their Driver's license to Kentucky to verify their identity, which is unusual.

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