Sunday, November 10, 2013 Outdone by Alternative Website: The HealthSherpa

People are frustrated right now about the new health care law, and it's website, and I'm one of them.  But I got some good information, as a result of a news story, I heard on ABC News about another website. 

Three young tech guys, George Kalogeropoulos, Ning Liang and Michael Wasser, looked at the troubled  health care website and decided to put up a website of their own.  Their site called The HealthSherpa at  lets you input your basic information and it will generate a list of your choices in health plans. I tried it and it works wonderfully. 

There is an issue with their site.  They missed the major gap dealing with subsidies for people earning LESS than $11,490 where you don't qualify for a subsidy.  I played around with their site and entered different income estimates for 2014 to demonstrate how this site works for this story.  

First you enter your zip code and tell it to FIND PLANS:

When I entered a local zip code, an income of $25,000, an age of 33, nonsmoker, and I clicked the ALL radio button under PLAN TYPE I got this listing of plans:

You then should figure out the possible subsidy you're entitled to by select your family size and your estimated income for 2014.  I entered 33 for age, and 1 for family size (so you get an idea of a single person) at the section TITLED Subsidy and that's when you'll see the numbers lowered by any subsidy under the law.

Now this selection shows ALL THE PLANS for you.  The first two are catastrophic plans.  You can scroll through a series of pages.  This is no big deal because this site is very fast. 

To show you more plans, I changed the radio button on PLAN TYPES to SILVER.  (Silver plans are plans covering 70% of expenses) and I got these results:

I was AMAZED at the speed and efficiency of the site.  You still have to go to either site, or your state exchange site, or call one of the call centers to sign up.  But The HealthSherpa website provides buttons to prompt you to do that. 

Kudos The HealthSherpa!  You should go to The HealthSherpa website and play with it using your information and you'll have a better idea of where you stand with the new health care law.