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Healthcare.gov Cannot Fix Enrollment Errors

• February 3, 2014 9:59 am

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Obamacare website Healthcare.gov cannot fix the enrollment errors of roughly 22,000 Americans, the Washington Post reports.

Tens of thousands of people say the health care website overcharged them for health insurance, put them in the wrong insurance program, or denied them coverage entirely, but the website is unable to process their appeals.

The Obama administration has not made public the fact that the appeals system for the online marketplace is not working. In recent weeks, legal advocates have been pressing administration officials, pointing out that rules for the online marketplace, created by the 2010 Affordable Care Act, guarantee due-process rights to timely hearings for Americans who think they have been improperly denied insurance or subsidies.

But at the moment, "there is no indication that infrastructure . . . necessary for conducting informal reviews and fair hearings has even been created, let alone become operational," attorneys at the National Health Law Program said in a late-December letter to leaders of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), the agency that oversees HealthCare.gov. The attorneys, who have been trying to exert leverage quietly behind the scenes, did not provide the letter to The Post but confirmed that they had sent it.

A CMS spokesman, Aaron Albright, said, "We are working to fully implement the appeals system."

According to the Post, CMS is telling people who have filed appeals to simply start over. However, many have already started paying for their new insurance and have no way of getting their money back.

Published under: Obamacare, Obamacare Exchanges