Progress made but problems remain with Nevada Health Link


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Progress made but problems remain with Nevada Health Link

By Michael Lopardi. CREATED Feb 21, 2014

Las Vegas, NV (KTNV) -- The developer of Nevada's troubled health insurance exchange said progress has been made but problems remain.

The update came just a day after Jon Hager announced he is resigning as executive director of the Silver State Health Insurance Exchange. The board overseeing Nevada Health Link met through a conference call on Friday afternoon.

"I want to publicly thank Jon Hager for his two years of devoted and tireless dedication to the development of the Silver State Health Insurance Exchange," board chairwoman Barbara Smith Campbell said. "Jon is one of the most intelligent young men that I have ever met and I know he will be successful."

But little else was said about Hager, who did not attend the meeting or take part in the call. Hager's resignation is effective March 14. Health exchange spokesman CJ Bawden said the board is expected to discuss the search for a new director at next Thursday's meeting.

While customers and brokers have complained about problems with the health link, at least one insurance organization is not happy either. Bobbette Bond with Nevada Health CO-OP expressed frustration during the public comment period and said problems with the health link are hurting the insurance companies' reputations.

"We recognize frustrations are high," Xerox group president David Hamilton said.

Hamilton said wait times for the call center have been dramatically cut, nearly a quarter of web glitches fixed and the backlog of unanswered written complaints is reduced by nearly 15-percent. Xerox is also working to lure back potential customers who expressed interest in the exchange but eventually gave up.

"We haven't resolved every problem yet but we are making progress," Hamilton said.

The next board meeting is scheduled for Thursday, Feb. 27, the third meeting in three weeks. Bawden said the board is meeting more frequently to make sure deadlines are met and to increase accountability.

"The Xerox team continues to have candid meetings with the Nevada Health Link Board of Directors, most recently this afternoon," spokeswoman Jennifer Wasmer said in a statement. "The Board, citizens and carriers have clearly communicated their concerns, and those have registered with us."

"Our aim for these meetings is to demonstrate continuous progress. Xerox’s dedicated teams are moving quickly to resolve issues and to help Nevadans get access to affordable health care through Nevada Health Link," the statement said.

"Xerox is absolutely committed to getting all aspects of the Nevada Health Link system right. At the end of the day, Nevada Health Link has to be a service we’re all proud of, and we’re focused on that goal," Wasmer said.