I tested healthcare.gov on the morning of October 1, before
I’d read any news stories about the problems,
and it worked fine for my purposes. This is because I live in
Massachusetts, so all I needed was a pointer to the Mass site,
where I wasn’t at that time able to find out my options, but I was
able to read a couple of articles about what was likely to change
Since then I’ve gotten two communications from my insurance
company. One was a “magazine” with an article stating that
everyone would have to go on the health care exchange because all
the current policies were ending on December 31. This was a
little alarming, but I decided to ignore it until the deadline was
A week or so later, I got a letter addressed to me personally,
informing me that I did not have to do anything to keep
my current coverage — that if I did nothing my current plan would
be replaced by one with a different name, which would be no more
expensive and might have better coverage. So I only needed to
shop for a new plan if I didn’t like the current one.
I still don’t have the details about the new plan, but since
I’m quite happy with the old plan, I’m not worried about it.
But I’m glad I’m not in a state where I have to depend on
healthcare.gov to find out my options. Apparently the decision to
make shopping impossible without registration was made about a
week before the site went live, and it was known before October 1
that registration didn’t work in major ways.