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Vermont Health Connect has billing problems

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MONTPELIER, Vermont — Officials say enrollees in insurance plans sold on Vermont's health care exchange have experienced problems with billing.

Health care advocate Trinka Kerr says her office, a special project of Vermont Legal Aid, received 65 calls about billing problems between April 1 and mid-July.

The Burlington Free Press reports Lt. Gov. Phil Scott says he received three complaints about billing in one day earlier this week.

Vermont Health Care Reform Chief Lawrence Miller acknowledges that billing has been a problem.

He says some people aren't receiving invoices and they may not realize that they were sent by email. He also says a chunk of bills went out late in July.

Miller has directed that every Vermont Health Connect customer be sent a paper bill each month and he wants to move up the due date for bills to eliminate overdue payment notices going to people who have actually paid.

"We are looking at moving the due date to the 25th of the month," he said. The date triggering notification of overdue payments would still be the last day of the month.

This past week the administration of Democratic Gov. Peter Shumlin announced the state is reducing its ties with CGI, the company that developed the problem-plagued Vermont Health Connect website.

State health overhaul officials said that they had begun work with a new contractor to try to fix Vermont Health Connect which — more than 10 months after it began operation — is still not fully functional.

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