Get PJ Media on your Apple

The PJ Tatler

by
Rick Moran

Bio

December 15, 2013 - 7:03 am

There seems to be a difference of opinion about the functionality of HealthCare.gov, the Obamacare website.

The administration says errors have been reduced to “near zero” while insurance companies claim the fixes have been “overstated.”

If what the companies say is true — they have little motivation for lying, or exaggerating the truth — January 1 will become another disastrous day for the Obamacare rollout.

The New York Times reports:

Julie Bataille, a spokeswoman at the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, acknowledged that the government had failed to inform insurance companies about some people who had chosen health plans on HealthCare.gov, but she said the number of such cases from Oct. 1 to Dec. 5 was lower than 15,000.

“Since the beginning of December, missing 834s as a percentage of total enrollments has been close to zero” — down from 15 percent in the two weeks starting Oct. 13, she said.

Ms. Bataille said most of the problems occurred from Oct. 1 to mid-November, as enrollment reports on some consumers “were either not being generated, or had errors due to larger technical system issues.”

On Tuesday and Wednesday, the government sent information to insurers listing everyone who had enrolled in a plan through the federal marketplace. Insurers are supposed to compare the information with their own records and with the daily reports they received from the government over the last 10 weeks.

Insurers said that they had found many discrepancies and errors and that the government was overstating the improvements in HealthCare.gov.

In some instances, they said, the federal government reported that the home address for a new policyholder was outside an insurer’s service area. In other cases, a child was listed as the main subscriber — the person responsible for paying premiums — and parents were listed as dependents.

In some cases, children were enrolled in a policy by the federal government and parents were left off, or vice versa. In other cases, the government mixed up the members of a family: A child or spouse was listed two or three times in the same application in late November. Such errors can have financial implications, increasing the amount of premiums that a family is required to pay.

While some of the problems were discovered in the last few days, insurers said that they had previously reported many of the errors to the “help desk” at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, and that the problems remained unresolved.

It hardly matters that 15,000 enrollees aren’t being reported to insurance companies — the so-called missing “834″ reports. That’s the least of their worries. Whether it’s the consumers who can’t fill out a form properly or a glitch with the website that has heretofore been hidden from CMS, the bottom line is that when unknown thousands of consumers try to use the health care system starting on January 1, they are going to be in for a very rude surprise:

Federal officials, insurers and health care providers said they were concerned about confusion and possible chaos in the early days of January, when people try to use the new insurance coverage they believe they have.

The government’s overriding message to insurers is: Do whatever you have to do to maximize enrollment and to provide coverage by Jan. 1 to anyone who wants it. Federal health officials have told insurers that they can sort out the details and work out financial arrangements with the government later.

“Confusion and possible chaos…” pretty much defines Obamacare. With so little reliable information coming from the government, and insurance companies contradicting the happy-face pronouncements of CMS and the White House about the website’s success, you have to wonder where the truth lies.

The administration’s less-than-zero credibility on Obamacare statistics appears to be matched by ignorance (or exaggeration) regarding how well HealthCare.gov is actually working. Consumers may be able to navigate the site more efficiently, although there is anecdotal evidence to the contrary, but what good is a smooth-running website if the information sent to insurers is bogus?

Chaos and confusion may be the hallmark of Obamacare, but these are real people whose lives are being turned upside down because of the incompetence of federal and state officials. It’s a preventable tragedy that is only just beginning.

Rick Moran is PJ Media's Chicago editor and Blog editor at The American Thinker. He is also host of the"RINO Hour of Power" on Blog Talk Radio. His own blog is Right Wing Nut House.

Comments are closed.

Top Rated Comments   
"The administration says errors have been reduced to “near zero” while insurance companies claim the fixes have been “overstated.” " Who you gonna believe? The people who said, if you like your health insurance, you can keep your health insurance. Period; or the insurance companies? I'll take the insurance companies.
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
All Comments   (12)
All Comments   (12)
Sort: Newest Oldest Top Rated
I simply got paid $9000 operating off my laptop computer this month. And if you're thinking that it is cool, and you also want to earn money then you are on the right way just go to this site for amazing details..........> W­W­W.b­l­u­e­4­8­.C­­­O­­­­­­M
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
my father in law recently got an almost new red Toyota Avalon Hybrid only from part-time off a computer... Visit Website >>>>> http://ow.ly/qjkbU
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
Having worked with insurance companies for over 20 years I can tell you they don't mistakes, nor can underwriting and issuance of policies be changed by the magic arm wave of an idiot politician (or appointee) Insurance companies have been adjusting to this sham law for two years, they are following the law, too bad the "so called" signatory isn't. Bottom line it is not going to work and where it goes from here is anybody's guess.
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
"The administration says errors have been reduced to “near zero” while insurance companies claim the fixes have been “overstated.” " Who you gonna believe? The people who said, if you like your health insurance, you can keep your health insurance. Period; or the insurance companies? I'll take the insurance companies.
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
"It’s a preventable tragedy that is only just beginning."
Listen, don't do ANYTHING, Republicans, until November that might distract from it. That's the smartest course and anyone who doesn't see that just hasn't thought about it the right way. We know what we are doing, or not doing, really.
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
The left may have already won. There is a very good chance that the health insurers are beyond the point that they can restore the former system.

Every day that goes by makes this more and more true, which is why the marxists are fighting the fight one inch at a time. Every day they survive is one day closer to oblivion for the insurers.

And the Republicans aren't even fighting. That alone is reason enough to hang them.
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
I think American enterprise is capable of filling any need, but assume not. What next then? The government orders health care providers to treat people without payment? Or do they have a clandestine Department of Insurance all ready to go to administer the health care system? I bet it has a web site! Those highly credentialed ignoramuses have thrown a wrench into the works without a clue what would happen. How could they?
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
"Or do they have a clandestine Department of Insurance all ready to go to administer the health care system?"

yes. It's called Medicare and Medicaid.
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
And now they want the insurers to commit fraud by "backdating" the "contracts" which are no such things since no money has changed hands. I knew this would be bad, but I did not imagine it would get this bad this fast.
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
Contracts! You are prattling about contracts when peoples' lives are at stake? Next you'll be moaning about private property and who knows what else. I guess they were right when they said Republicans care more about companies and property than about people.
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
if people's lives were at stake, than those people could have made the decisions and chosen the better path for themselves years ago, and didn't.

Now they want someone else to help foot the bill, because they chose $200 sneakers for their kids, and piling up debts rather than being fiscally responsible.
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
It is not a preventable tragedy. It is a melange of intended and unintended consequences.

The tragedy already exists. It can no longer be prevented, only minimize the devastation, and that will be vast...beyond our worst fears.
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
View All