Insurer backs 'pause' on O-Care rollout

A top health insurance company urged government officials to “push the pause button” on ObamaCare and shut down the troubled HealthCare.gov until it could be completely fixed.

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“Pushing the pause button right now would be a good thing,” Aetna CEO Mark Bertolini said at an event last Thursday, as reported by The Courant on Monday. “If you do it right now, five to 10 years from now, nobody’s going to remember this.”

Bertolini was speaking on “Reinventing Health Care” at the Annual Economic Conference of the Tunxis Community College Foundation.

Aetna is one of the nation’s “Big Five” health insurers that sells insurance across the entire country.

Bertolini said that the technological roots of HealthCare.gov's troubles meant it was best to put the whole system on ice rather than work in a patchwork manner to fix the online enrollment portal. 

“When you get into this kind of situation with technology, you just don’t have a short-term solution,” he said. “Turn off the stuff that isn’t working.”

So far, the Obama administration has tried to fix the federal health insurance exchange without a general shutdown, instead gradually upgrading the site day by day. The site’s frequent crashes and low number of successful enrollments have invited severe criticism from Republicans and led to calls for Secretary of Health and Human Service Kathleen Sebelius to resign.