Monday, August 17, 2015

Ongoing Obamacare Schadenfreude

While the email scandal is eating up all the media interest, the slow, continuing crash of Obamacare against economic reality, like the Titanic scrapping against that iceberg, just keeps going on. A few recent examples.

A million here, a million there, and pretty soon we're taking real money: IRS may never recoup $350 million in Obamacare tax credit overpayments
A quirk in the law means the IRS will never be able to recoup nearly $350 million in overpayments on Obamacare tax credits last year, and one top senator says he is worried that fraudsters will exploit the loophole to wring more cash out of the government.

Most customers in the health care law’s insurance exchanges get taxpayer-funded subsidies to help cover their premiums, and the amount is based on their expected earnings. At the end of the year, they are supposed to square their anticipated earnings with what they actually made. Because most exchange members received higher incomes — through promotions or better jobs — they have to repay the IRS.

The Affordable Care Act sets a cap on the top repayment amount, so consumers don’t get sticker shock at tax time. But Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley, the Iowa Republican who has emerged as a key watchdog on Obamacare, said some exchange customers could intentionally misestimate their earnings, breach the cap and then avoid having to pay it all back.
Remember when Obama said that undocumented immigrants illegal aliens would never get Obamacare? He lied. Did Not Verify Social Security Numbers, Citizenship Status’s internal controls did not effectively determine eligibility for coverage because Social Security numbers and citizenship status were not always verified properly, according to a Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) audit.

The Inspector General (IG) investigated HHS to determine whether the Federal marketplace’s internal controls determined correctly whether individuals were eligible for qualified health plans.

The IG found that the internal controls did not always correctly verify Social Security numbers, citizenship status, annual household income, and family size information to determine eligibility.
. . .
Another example of weak internal controls was found in efforts to verify citizenship status. The marketplace did not always verify this information through the Social Security Administration and the Department of Homeland Security, as was required.
Most Health Insurance Co-ops Are Losing Money, Federal Audit Finds
Most federal insurance cooperatives created under the Affordable Care Act are losing money and could have difficulty repaying millions of dollars in federal loans, an internal government audit has found, prompting the Obama administration to step up supervision of the carriers.

Daniel R. Levinson, the inspector general at the Department of Health and Human Services, said that most of the insurance co-ops enrolled fewer people than they had predicted, and that 22 of the 23 co-ops lost money last year.

Even as overall enrollments for insurance have increased, many of the co-ops are still losing money, a review of 2015 data by federal health officials shows.
There's probably a reason these people aren't working for the real health care insurers.

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