KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

GOP Lawmakers Seek Probes Of State Health Insurance Exchanges

In separate requests, Republican congressmen have sought federal investigations into Maryland and Oregon's problem-riddled online insurance marketplaces.

The Washington Post: Republican Congressmen Request A Federal Probe Of Md. Health Insurance Exchange
Two Republican congressmen have called for an investigation of the tens of millions of federal dollars that Maryland spent to build an online health exchange that state officials say has so many defects that they might have to abandon parts, or even all, of it. Reps. Andy Harris (Md.) and Jack Kingston (Ga.) sent a letter Wednesday to the inspector general of the Department of Health and Human Services and asked for an immediate “formal investigation into the flagrant waste and abuse of taxpayer monies" (Johnson, 2/13).

The Associated Press: Congressman Calls For Cover Oregon Investigation
U.S. Rep. Greg Walden and three congressional colleagues — all fellow Republicans— on Thursday requested a federal investigation of Oregon's troubled health insurance exchange, which has been unable to sign up a single person through its online portal because of technical problems that were known months before it was supposed to launch (Barnard, 2/13). 

The Oregonian: Congress Mulls Probe Of Cover Oregon Health Exchange As Programmers Try To Fix It
The dose of election-year politics only boosts the pressure on the only exchange in the country to not enroll anyone electronically as envisioned by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, known as Obamacare. On Thursday afternoon, the Oregon exchange's appointed board heard how the exchange continues to test the beta version of its website and software, possibly letting agents use it by this weekend. ... Oregonians seeking health care but caught in limbo, many for months after submitting applications to the exchange's makeshift manual processing system (Budnick, 2/13).

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