Wednesday, August 07, 2013

GOP Research: ObamaCare’s Navigators Veering Off Course

A compendium of projects failing via GOP Research.  No need to defund ACA, it collapses of its own accord.
 
ObamaCare's Program To "Recruit And Train Workers" To Help People Sign Up For ObamaCare Is "Barely Off The Ground In Many States." "Opening day for the new health-insurance marketplaces is two months away, but efforts to recruit and train workers to help people enroll are barely off the ground in many states." (Amy Schatz, "Preparations For Health Exchanges On Tight Schedule," The Wall Street Journal, 8/5/13)
Facing More Delays, The Obama Administration Has Weakened The Training Requirements For ObamaCare's "Navigators" Program. "With time running short before enrollment kicks off Oct. 1, the Obama administration last week cut back on training requirements for these 'navigators.' Officials were concerned there might not be enough time to do more-extensive training before the health-insurance exchanges open." (Amy Schatz, "Preparations For Health Exchanges On Tight Schedule," The Wall Street Journal, 8/5/13)
  • The Administration Slashed The Hours Of Training For The Program By A Third. "Three weeks ago, the administration said navigators would need up to 30 hours of training before they start, but it said last week that 20 hours would be sufficient. 'We view training as an ongoing process, and will continue to offer refresher training…throughout the six-month open-enrollment period as we respond to consumers' needs,' said Joanne Peters, a Department of Health and Human Services spokeswoman." (Amy Schatz, "Preparations For Health Exchanges On Tight Schedule," The Wall Street Journal, 8/5/13)
As HHS Isn't Expected To Release Grants For The Navigator's Program For A Couple Of Weeks, It Only "Leaves Just 32 Business Days To Hire And Train Thousands Of Helpers." "Grants to hire and train the workers aren't expected to be released for another two weeks for the 34 states where the federal government is running all or part of the marketplaces, which will offer insurance to those who don't get it on the job or from Medicare or Medicaid. That leaves just 32 business days to hire and train thousands of helpers in these states." (Amy Schatz, "Preparations For Health Exchanges On Tight Schedule," The Wall Street Journal, 8/5/13)
  • At This Time, "The Obama Administration Is Still Reviewing Applications For $54 Million" In Taxpayer Funds. "The Obama administration is still reviewing applications for $54 million available in grants to fund the navigators. Those awards are expected to be announced Aug. 15." (Amy Schatz, "Preparations For Health Exchanges On Tight Schedule," The Wall Street Journal, 8/5/13)

With Delays Mounting For The Navigators Program, Fraud Continues To Be A Concern

The Obama Administration Has Dragged Its Feet On Issuing Rules And Regulations For The Program. "The navigator issue is one of many bedeviling federal and state officials working to launch the centerpiece of President Barack Obama's health law this fall. Delays in issuing some rules and implementing the law have officials scrambling to get ready for October." (Amy Schatz, "Preparations For Health Exchanges On Tight Schedule," The Wall Street Journal , 8/5/13)
The Federal Trade Commission Is Still Waiting For Finalized Rules "On How Best To Distinguish Real Navigators From Fake Ones." "She said her agency is waiting for the Department of Health and Human Services to finalize rules for the navigators before advising consumers on how best to distinguish real navigators from fake ones." ("Confusion About ObamaCare Opens The Door For Fraud," McClatchy, 7/15/13)
  • Associate Director Of The Federal Trade Commission's Division Of Marketing Practices: "There's No Doubt In My Mind That The Fraudsters View It As An Opportunity To Rip People Off." 'This is the huge, new government program. There's no doubt in my mind that the fraudsters view it as an opportunity to rip people off,' said Lois Greisman, associate director for the Federal Trade Commission's division of marketing practices." ("Confusion About ObamaCare Opens The Door For Fraud," McClatchy, 7/15/13)

Criminals With Access To Sensitive Information Could Be Hired

Several States Don't "Require Criminal Background Checks." "Sixteen states-some that are helping run their own marketplaces and some that aren't-have additional requirements for navigators. Florida, Texas and Ohio, for instance, require criminal background checks." (Amy Schatz, "Preparations For Health Exchanges On Tight Schedule," The Wall Street Journal, 8/5/13)
  • In California, Navigators Will "Have Access To Highly Sensitive Consumer Information Such As Social Security Numbers, Dates Of Birth, Income Data And Tax Returns." "These enrollers, who will earn $58 from the state for every application completed, would have access to highly sensitive consumer information such as Social Security numbers, dates of birth, income data and tax returns." (Chad Terhune, "Call For Screening Of Health Care Enrollers Meets Resistance," Los Angeles Times¸3/15/13)
"Consumer Groups Are Worried The Uninsured Could Fall Victim To Fraud, Identify Theft, Or Other Crimes At The Hands Of Some Of The Very People Who Are Supposed To Help Them Enroll." "As California prepares to launch its health care exchange, consumer groups are worried the uninsured could fall victim to fraud, identity theft or other crimes at the hands of some of the very people who are supposed to help them enroll." ("Fraud Fear Raised In California's Health Exchange," The Associated Press, 7/14/13)
California's Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones, A Democrat: "We Can Have A Real Disaster On Our Hands." "'We can have a real disaster on our hands,' Jones, a Democrat, said in an interview." ("Fraud Fear Raised In California's Health Exchange," The Associated Press, 7/14/13)

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