In February of this year, James Edwards of the Center for Immigration Studies published a report titled “Immigration and Obamacare: Proposed Medicaid Rules for Verifying Status.” His report summarized the federal government’s January publication of such rules being proposed by the Health and Human Services Department and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. These proposed rules were later finalized on July 15 (click here for the 164-page “Final Rule” document).

Edwards’ report documented the security flaws developing as a result of the Obama administration’s political goal of enrolling as many people as possible in some sort of health care coverage.

Following are highlights from Edwards’ report, focusing on the easing of the non-citizen application process and the removal of safeguards:

  • Two, down from three, documents are to be required to establish one’s status. Attestation made about someone’s citizenship status in a single affidavit counts as one of the accepted forms of identity.

This means that a signed document from a second individual which simply states that the applicant is who he says is will be an accepted form of identification.

  • Electronic documentation begins to overtake presentation of authentic identification documents. Similarly, a record of identity or status verification is regarded as more important than having authenticated copies of valid, legitimate documents on record.

States do not need to file copies of the documents. They are only required to keep track of whether or not the documents were accepted. No paper trail.

  • If electronic verification of citizenship or immigration status fails or is delayed, applicants for health benefits must have a “reasonable opportunity period” in which to confirm their status. If otherwise eligible for Medicaid, states must grant Medicaid enrollment to unverified persons during this period. … “Reasonable opportunity” even applies, under this rule, to persons “unable to provide a SSN [Social Security number]“ — a rather glaring loophole for frauds to exploit.

Edwards’ use of the phrase “otherwise eligible” raises the issue of the expansion and easing of the verification process for Medicaid and CHIP under President Obama. For example, eligibility for CHIP was expanded during President Obama’s first term, and the necessary documentation was decreased.

So: how simple is it to fraudulently enroll for Medicaid under the rules governing Obamacare?

Submit electronic copies of a false affidavit and a false work document while claiming to be a member of the “presumed eligible” populations, and you are required to get at least 90 days.

Most troubling, the establishment of Healthcare.gov and the other state-run exchanges allows this fraud to be perpetrated from anywhere on the planet. I asked Edwards:

PJM: “Based on the HHS/CMMS rules, couldn’t, say, al-Zawahiri get himself auto-enrolled with a “reasonable opportunity period” from a laptop in Pakistan?”

Edwards: “I hadn’t thought of that. Yes.”