Legislation Requires Transparency Regarding Obamacare Enrollment Data
- To ensure transparency regarding enrollment in Obamacare, H.R. 3362, the Exchange Information Disclosure Act, requires the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to provide the American people and Congress weekly reports on the status of HealthCare.gov.
- These reports will provide key metrics regarding HealthCare.gov, including unique website visits, accounts created, qualified health plan selection, and Medicaid enrollment. This information is important for numerous reasons: it will allow policymakers and the public to assess the law’s progress, it will allow state insurance commissioners to better understand and predict future enrollment trends and prices, and it will hold the administration accountable, rather than allowing information to be released piecemeal, on a delayed basis, or not at all.
- The amended bill also would require HHS to provide data on the number of Americans who have fully enrolled in an exchange plan by paying their first month’s premium, as well as the age of exchange enrollees.
- Despite repeated questions from Congress, the administration has failed to provide adequate information on the numbers of Americans who are actually enrolled through an exchange or basic demographic information.
- More than three months after the launch of the exchanges, we simply do not know how many Americans are enrolled in an exchange plan or whether young Americans are participating.
- The failure to disclose these key metrics is stunning given that the administration initially defined success as the number of Americans enrolling in the program and whether the “risk pool” is properly balanced between the younger and older Americans.
- On September 30, Secretary Sebelius told NBC News, “Success looks like at least 7 million people having signed up by the end of March, 2014.” The White House believes “2.7 million of those must be young, healthy adults…to offset the cost of older and sicker enrollees” according to reports from the Huffington Post.
- The administration has since reversed course on its claims that the success of the law can be judged by enrollment, raising even more questions about what the enrollment data show – and more reason to be transparent.
- There should be bipartisan support for requiring the administration to transparently provide complete updates on the status of a $2 trillion dollar program.
- In addition, H.R. 3362 requires regular reporting regarding technical issues affecting HealthCare.gov and HHS efforts to address such issues. HHS must also disclose updated lists of navigators, certified application counselors, agents and brokers certified by exchanges