BCBS of NC has technical problems, extends ACA enrollment deadline

As the open enrollment deadline looms, one of North Carolina's largest health insurers is experiencing customer service problems, according to The Charlotte Observer.

Due to a new technology upgrade, Chapel Hill-based Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina is having numerous issues assisting customers. The insurer's customer service phone line is backed up, and many customers aren't sure whether they have health insurance at all.

Even though the Jan. 31 enrollment deadline is weeks away, BCBS of N.C. is having an above-normal call volume, according to WRAL.com. Other customers have not been billed, have been billed for cancelled policies or haven't received their insurance ID cards in the mail.

"We are in the process of implementing a new customer service records system that will allow our customer service representatives to provide more personalized services faster," BCBS of N.C. said, according to the report. BCBS of N.C. said it's experiencing a call volume of 400 to 500 percent higher than at this time last year.

To resolve the issue, the insurer is scheduling weekend phone calls with customers and encouraging them to be patient. "We will provide an update once we receive notification that all issues are resolved. We sincerely apologize for the inconvenience," the insurer posted on Facebook.

Due to the technical issues, BCBS of N.C. extended its payment deadline to Jan. 7 for coverage beginning Jan. 1.

Only two other insurers in North Carolina offer individual plans on the exchanges. BCBS of N.C. had approximately 400,000 customers under the ACA as of last May.

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