U.S. medical providers are seeing only a trickle of patients newly insured under President Barack Obama's healthcare law, as insurers, hospitals and doctors try to work out any hitches in coverage.
More than 2 million people have signed up for new private health plans that took effect on Wednesday under the Affordable Care Act, popularly known as Obamacare. While some of those consumers were already lining up doctor visits last month, early reports from providers and an online medical booking service show the demand for care has been modest so far.
Within the Obama administration, officials fear a surge of patients in the coming weeks could spotlight cases where consumers who signed up for insurance can't immediately get care due to technical failures on the government's HealthCare.gov enrollment website.
Already on Friday, Senate Republicans opposed to the law seized on scattered media reports of a handful of people having difficulty confirming their new insurance policies, feeding into a narrative of Obamacare's harms that is expected to intensify ahead of Congressional elections in November.
[Read Full article: Early days of Obamacare bring trickle, not flood, of patients]