On October 1, the Obamacare state-based health insurance exchanges open for business. It is on that day that the ultimate fate of the “Obamacare project” will be decided.
What, specifically, will determine the fate of Obamacare?
It won’t be votes in the House or the Senate. It won’t be speeches made by politicians. It won’t be ads on television.
Jeffrey Young summed it up:
“If the health insurance exchange websites work and are easy to use, if the application process isn’t as headache-inducing as filing taxes, if there are enough people available to offer customer service and if the prices aren’t through the roof, Obamacare will begin to take root in American society the way Medicare and Social Security did.”
As a person who designs the interfaces of complex analytical programs and explains how they work to people, I have to say I agree 100%.
I hope Obama has a team working day and night on testing and re-testing these systems, and making sure even their back-up Customer Service Representatives have back-up.
But this is one of the few places where I will agree with the conservative view that government operation has some similarity to business operation: The customer experience IS everything.
Let’s hope it looks better than…..