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Oregon Lawmakers To Grill Leaders Of Beleaguered Health Insurance Exchange

Northwest News Network | Nov. 19, 2013 3:08 p.m.

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Oregon's health insurance exchange has yet to enroll a single applicant through its website.

Oregon's health insurance exchange has yet to enroll a single applicant through its website.

Cover Oregon

Oregon lawmakers want to know why the state’s beleaguered health insurance exchange has yet to enroll a single applicant through its website.

The head of Cover Oregon will face scrutiny during a pair of hearings Wednesday at the state capitol.

Most Oregonians first heard about Cover Oregon when the agency rolled out a series of upbeat commercials last summer. But that peppy optimism quickly gave way to bureaucratic backpedaling, as it became clear the online health insurance sign-up website wasn’t ready.

The state assigned hundreds of employees to process paper applications. But Oregon lawmakers want to know how things got to this point.

“We’ve heard a lot about their hopes and their dreams and what they expect to do,” says Democratic representative and House Committee on Health Care Chair Mitch Greenlick. “But I really want them to give us, even if it’s bad news, to give us a straight story on where we are and what’s happening.”

But Greenlick says for now, he doesn’t think it’s a good idea for the head of Cover Oregon, Rocky King, to lose his job. Greenlick says switching leadership at this point would simply cause even more problems.

Copyright 2013 NWNews. To see more, visit http://www.nwnewsnetwork.org/.

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