Covered California sees drop in traffic in second week

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Covered California reported a dip in online visitors and call volume in its second week of operation, but broker certification is advancing.

According to data released by the state-run exchange Tuesday, there were more than 602,539 unique visitors to the exchange’s website for the week ending Oct. 5-12, down from 986,705 opening week, Oct. 1-5. Call volume also dropped to 45,785, from 59,003 the previous week.

Further, agents who were not certified in time for launch are slowly receiving their certifications. By Oct. 12, 1,295 insurance agents were cleared to work on the exchange, with 3,382 approvals in progress. Enrollment counselors lagged behind, with 279 certified and 3,824 in progress.

The state has been successful in streamlining the process so that several hundred agent applications are being finished and entered into the system each day, says MD Sam Smith, president of Genesis Financial in the Los Angeles area. “At this rate, they should be through the backlog in short order.  Now if we can just get the agent search functionality to work right, that will be a major step forward.”

Smith, president of the California Association of Health Underwriters and a member of the Covered California Advisory Group, also explains that an agreement was reached on Monday for 11 major points with regard to agents and the exchange’s website and the certification process. 

“Several of these are substantial wins for the agent community,” he explains. However at press time, he was unable to release them.

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