MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — A Twin Cities family says their newborn has been without health insurance for months due to MNsure delays. The Emmerichs tried for more than four months to get coverage for their baby boy.
Any mom knows there’s no real break on maternity leave. Elisabeth Emmerich didn’t plan on spending so much of it away from little Maxwell.
“It’s been a lot of phone calls,” Emmerich said.
She pointed us to a stack of her son’s doctor bills.
“This is the final notice and we may be referred to a third party collection agency,” she said.
Emmerich first signed Maxwell up for insurance through MNsure two weeks after he was born.
“I thought it would take maybe a month at the most,” Emmerich said.
But more than four months would pass.
MNsure spokesperson Joe Campbell admits the state health exchange is in the middle of a backlog.
“No she’s not alone and it’s not acceptable,” Campbell said.
Some 3,700 people are waiting on changes to their insurance to be processed. About 350 of those, like the Emmerichs, are considered as “add a person cases” that MNsure says it’s giving priority to.
Campbell says more call takers and technical support at MNsure should clear them out within the next two months.
“Any sort of delay in obtaining health coverage for your kid can put a strain on your family and that’s why we’re doing everything we can to address these as quickly as possible,” Campbell said.
“It’s been really frustrating,” Emmerich added.
Once the Emmerichs story got out, the call they’d waited months for came on Thursday. Maxwell is finally covered.
“It’s a big relief,” Emmerich said.
More than 300,000 Minnesotans have enrolled in health insurance so far through MNsure.
MNsure wants to clear the backlog out before open enrollment begins on Nov. 15. Anyone experiencing a long wait won’t incur any expenses. The coverage will all be retroactive.