The administration has finally announced the error rate for 834 transmissions, the data sent to insurance companies after applicants fill out their information on the Healthcare.gov marketplace. It's not good: one in ten forms contain errors, a spokesperson told reporters during a press call today.
834 is short for "834 Electronic Data Interchange Transmissions" or "834 EDI Transactions," the files that get passed to insurance companies so new enrollees can be added to their systems. This is a critical function of the federal marketplace: if it doesn't correctly communicate with insurers, people won't get the coverage they think they've signed up for.
Insurance companies have reported errors since the site launched
The administration says the error rate has improved since October and November, when one in four 834s had errors. Insurance companies have reported 834 errors since the site launched, saying they had to call applicants to manually verify information. There are also reports of 834 errors coming in from states that built heir own exchanges.
Healthcare.gov launched with hundreds of bugs, but fixing the site has been a top priority for the administration. Overall, the site has vastly improved and received 3.7 million visitors this week. Unfortunately today's news shows major problems persist.