Shoddy Oversight Led To Healthcare.gov Delays, Technical Issues And Cost Overruns, Audit Finds
The report identifies early failures by Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services employees to monitor eight companies handling more than $600 million in contracts to build the site. Elsewhere, news outlets report on disappearing PPO options in Florida, rising insurance rates in Georgia and the impact of insurer mega-mergers on the cost and quality of care for consumers.
How Healthcare.gov Botched $600 Million Worth Of Contracts
The public employees responsible for overseeing $600 million in contracts to build healthcare.gov were inadequately trained, kept sloppy records, and failed to identify delays and problems that contributed to millions in cost overruns. That’s according to a new government audit, published today. It reveals widespread failures by the federal agency charged with managing the private contractors who built healthcare.gov. The audit is the first to document, in detail, how shoddy oversight by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), which manages federal health programs including Obamacare, contributed to the website’s early struggles. (Tozzi, 9/15)
Health News Florida:
2016 Florida Health Care Rates Raise A Question: Where Did The PPOs Go?
Florida’s health insurance market for next year is beginning to take shape, and there will be cost increases. But that’s not what’s raising eyebrows. In Florida, managed care health plans will dominate the market place, and the emergence of a new system has some wondering, what is an EPO? First the bad news. According to Florida’s Office of Insurance Regulation, healthcare costs will rise an average of 9.5 percent next year. Now, the good news: many consumers won’t pay that. (Hatter, 9/15)
Georgia Health News:
Health Insurance Rates Headed Up In 2016
Many Georgians buying individual or family health insurance will see double-digit increases in their premiums for 2016. Insurance rates approved recently by Georgia Insurance Commissioner Ralph Hudgens range from hikes of 27 percent and 29 percent for Alliant Health Plans’ individual policyholders to slight decreases for a few plans. (Miller, 9/14)
The Philadelphia Inquirer:
What Do Health Insurance Mergers Mean For You?
America’s biggest health insurance companies are about to become bigger. In recent months, Anthem announced plans to buy Cigna, and Aetna announced a deal to acquire Humana. That will leave only three major national companies. Will less competition lead to higher prices? Will it mean lower quality coverage? At a recent hearing of the House Judiciary Committee, an industry group, America’s Health Insurance Plans, tried to dampen those concerns, while the American Hospital Association and the American Medical Association, along with two health policy experts, warned that consumers could be in for rough ride. (Field, 9/14)