In one of stranger than fiction twists that’s characterized healthcare reform, online health insurance broker EHealthInsurance.com which had once adamantly opposed healthcare reform, now looks to make a tidy profit from it. EHealthInsurance.com is now bidding to win a government contract to run an updated version of the government’s HealthCare.gov website which launched this week. The contract EHealthInsurance.com is bidding on is estimated to be worth $5 million to $10 million and is expected to be awarded sometime this month.
The early stage version of the HealthCare.gov website which launched this week currently provides a listing of the health insurance plans available in each state for individuals and small groups, including contact information and links to doctors and hospitals in each health insurance plan’s network. HealthCare.gov also provides links to government health insurance programs, such as Medicare, Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program. In October, HealthCare.gov is due to expand to include include the prices and benefits of health insurance plans, as well as detailed eligibility criteria for government health plans.
EHealthInsurance.com’s website provides consumers with information to compare varying health insurance plans and prices, and collects fees for each customer it enrolls in a health insurance plan. Although other government websites include enrollment features (for example, Medicare.gov which allows users to enroll in a prescription drug plan), there are no plans to include an enrollment feature on HealthCare.gov.
Do you think an online health insurance broker like EHealthInsurance.com should run HealthCare.gov? Tell us about it at the MyHealthCafe.com Forums.
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