[And if you have your own experiences to share, and especially screen dumps, please add them in comments or contact me. Either Federal Exchanges, or state exchanges. I'm especially interested in Covered California! Thank you! --lambert]
firstname.lastname@example.org from Maine had a registration #FAIL at step 3. Here's the screen dump:
According to the Green Party’s 2016 Presidential candidate, Dr. Jill Stein, the Democratic Party cannot be trusted to defend the “interests of regular people.”
“We need our own party, organized by, led by, and founded by, WE the people NOT the corporations!”
“My Power to the People Plan is for deep system change, from greed and exploitation of corporate capitalism to a human-centered economy: PEOPLE, PLANET, PEACE OVER PROFIT!”
The upcoming US Presidential election - where affordable health care and education are at issue, will not be able to fix the problems caused by ignoring the failure to exclude provision of health insurance and education services from the TISA negotiations
In India, on the other side of the world, a debate has been raging for a year over India's entry to the WTO and the implications of Indias signing the WTO GATS, an act which, the Indian media is saying, eliminates the right to education (and health care).
India therefore should be seen as one of the only countries where these issues have ever seen the light of day in the media. Read more about The upcoming US Presidential election - where affordable health care and education are at issue, will not be able to fix the problems caused by ignoring the failure to exclude provision of health insurance and education services from the TISA negotiations
Thomas Palley recently blogged a post that was cross-posted at Naked Capitalism where I read it. In it, he discussed the question of whether Hillary Clinton's apparent intention to run as a progressive in 2016 represents a sincere change in her views, or whether it is just a political communications strategy to please the progressive base of the Democratic Party.
In his analysis, Palley points to Clinton's failure to answer questions of journalists and to be pinned down to specifics on policy questions. He also points to the fact that the economic advisers who are central to Clintonworld still include Robert Rubin, Larry Summers, and Peter Orszag, and, I think, he reasonably could have added Gene Sperling and Jack Lew, who are still serving President Obama, but who were two of Bill Clinton's mainstays. These economists, and others associated with the Clintons had a hand in all the economic policy failures of the past 20 years, and continues with this money quote: Read more about Is Progressivism in the Eye of the Beholder?
ObamaCare Clusterfuck: Howard Dean throws Gruber (and by extension Obama (and Clinton)) under the bus
This is interesting. Mediaite:
Reacting Wednesday to the now-infamous “Gruber video,” former DNC chair Howard Dean said it demonstrates how the Affordable Care Act was written by “elitists” who don’t understand America.
MSNBC’s Morning Joe played the 2013 clip of Obamacare consultant Jonathan Gruber explaining that a “lack of transparency” and “the stupidity of the American voter” helped get the 2010 health care law passed. Asked for his reaction by Mika Brzezinski, Dean went off:
The problem is not that he said it. The problem is that he thinks it. The core problem under the damn law is it was put together by a bunch of elitists two don’t fundamentally understand the American people. That’s what the problem is.
Dean was a long-time proponent of single-payer health care, rather than the standard insurance-based American system or its legislative overhaul.
Over the past decade, there has been a cultural shift in Americans' attitudes about the principle of universal health care coverage, one of the main rationales for the ACA. In 2007, during the presidential primary season, public support for the view that the federal government has a responsibility to make sure all Americans have health insurance coverage was at 64% (Gallup, 2007). By 2014, this number had declined to 47% (Pew, January–February 2014). In addition, there has been a decline in overall public trust in the federal government to handle domestic problems such as health care from 51% in 2012 to 40% in 2014, which may also play a role in depressing public support for the ACA (Gallup, September 2014).
Now, to be fair, NEJM goes on to attribute this drop to paid advertising by ObamaCare opponents: Read more about ObamaCare Clusterfuck: Obama destroys public support for universal coverage
With health insurance marketplaces about to open for 2015 enrollment, the Obama administration has told insurance companies that it will delay requirements for them to disclose data on (1) the number of people enrolled, (2) the number of claims denied and (3) the costs to consumers for specific services.
For months, insurers have been asking the administration if they had to comply with two sections of the Affordable Care Act that require “transparency in coverage.”
In a bulletin sent to insurers last week, the administration said, “We do not intend to enforce the transparency requirements until we provide further guidance.” Administration officials said the government and insurers needed more time to collect and analyze the data.
The mind boggles, doesn't it? Remember, the whole (flawed) rationale for ObamaCare (assuming good faith) was that consumers, by shopping in the marketplace, would bring costs down by forcing competition on insurers. Suppose -- bear with me, here -- I were ordering health insurance from Amazon.com; not so far fetched when you remember Obama compared using the marketplaces to buying a flat screen TV at Best Buy. At Amazon, you'd see (1) how many people bought the product ("the number of people enrolled"), (2) whether the shipper actually delivered on the product ("number of claims denied"), and (3) how much the product costs ("the costs to consumers for specific services"). On this last, yes, I know services are supposed to be covered by the policy, but with narrow networks and formularies, along with high deductibles and co-pays, it's hard to know. For example, I'd want to make damned sure, with a high-priced procedure, that the service provider was in network. Price breakouts would help with that.)
So, Obama wants you to be a smart shopper; he just doesn't want to give you the information that would make you smart (again, assuming the idea that shopping makes you a better consumer of health care works, which it doesn't). That's some catch. Read more about ObamaCare Clusterfuck: Marketplace "consumers" denied the information they need to shop
Corrente readers could see this coming in May 2013: "California exchange spending and contractors exempted from open records law". I'm sure there are plenty of rationalizations for exemptions like that, but it's hard to think of any good reasons. And so we come to today's story from AP:
AP Exclusive: California gives no-bid health pacts
LOS ANGELES (AP) -- California's health insurance exchange has awarded $184 million in contracts without the competitive bidding and oversight that is standard practice across state government, including deals that sent millions of dollars to a firm whose employees have long-standing ties to the agency's executive director. ...
Several of those contracts worth a total of $4.2 million went to a consulting firm, The Tori Group, whose founder has strong professional ties to agency Executive Director Peter Lee, while others were awarded to a subsidiary of a health care company he once headed.
Awarding no-bid contracts is unusual in state government, where rules promote "open and fair competition" to give taxpayers the best deal and avoid ethical conflicts. The practice is generally reserved for emergencies or when no known competition exists. ...
The agency confirmed some no-bid contracts were awarded to people with previous professional ties to Lee, but emphasized Covered California was under pressure to move fast and needed specialized skills.
What a steaming load of crap. They had four years to build the system, and "specialized skills" are always a rationalization for cronyism. I mean, come on. The bidding process is meant to find out if the needed skills really are all that specialized! Read more about ObamaCare Clusterfuck: Covered California gives no-bid contracts to cronies
I got a cheery note in the mail from HHS about "life changes" that the grateful recipients of ObamaCare must "report" the following "life changes." Be on the lookout for the real piece of fuckery, because it's not obvioius at first glance:
Life changes to report
You must report a change if you:
Get married or divorced
Have a child, adopt a child, or place a child for adoption
Have a change in income
Get health coverage through a job or a program like Medicare or Medicaid
Change your place of residence
Have a change in disability status
Gain or lose a dependent
Experience other changes that may affect your income and household size
Other changes to report: change in tax filing status; change of citizenship or immigration status; incarceration or release from incarceration; change in status as an American Indian/Alaska Native or tribal status; correction to name, date of birth, or Social Security number.
When and how to report changes
You should report these changes to the Marketplace as soon as possible.
If these changes qualify you for a special enrollment period to change plans, in most cases you have 60 days from the life event to enroll in new coverage. If the changes qualify you for more or less savings, it’s important to make adjustments as soon as possible.
Important: Do not report these changes by mail.
You can report these changes 2 ways:
Online. Log in to your account. Select your application, then select “Report a life change” from the menu on the left.
By phone. Contact the Marketplace Call Center at 1-800-318-2596 (TTY: 1-855-889-4325)
Learn more from the IRS about how changes can affect the premium tax credit you may be eligible for.
Look. Wouldn't it be simpler if they just make ObamaCare recipients wear ankle bracelets?
ObamaCare Clusterfuck: Be sure to record EVERYTHING when you talk to your insurance company rep AND your ACA marketplace rep
Here's cheerful little horror story (and little horror stories are all we've got right now, because heaven forfend HHS or CMS or our famously free press or even Congress gather any aggregate data about quality of service). And do note the only reasons this citizen got any satisfaction is that (a) he recorded both flavors of weasel, the ObamaCare rep who did the sales job, and the health insurance rep who tried to deny the care, and (b) he could go to the press, once he had the recordings. Read more about ObamaCare Clusterfuck: Be sure to record EVERYTHING when you talk to your insurance company rep AND your ACA marketplace rep
If 4.6 million in Federal exchanges lose premium subsidies due to Halbig, we will conform to GATS, NAFTA, CAFTA, TPP, TAFTA/TTIP+TiSA. Current subsidies and ACA rules probably don't. Coincidence?
The unseen hand of secretive trade policies and secretive free trade agreements strikes again, although of course, as always, for a reason that mentions them not. Read more about If 4.6 million in Federal exchanges lose premium subsidies due to Halbig, we will conform to GATS, NAFTA, CAFTA, TPP, TAFTA/TTIP+TiSA. Current subsidies and ACA rules probably don't. Coincidence?
And why? Outright looting by insurance companies. PNHP, quoting the Canadian Medical Journal:
ORONTO -- With the prospect of greater pay, fewer bureaucratic headaches and the opportunity to provide better care for patients, the number of American doctors migrating north is rising, according to Canadian recruiters and Canadian Medical Association data. Read more about ObamaCare Clusterfuck: Doctors moving north to single payer Canada
The family’s troubles began in February, when Amber Smith delivered daughter Kinsley five weeks prematurely. Kinsley spent 10 days in Summerlin Hospital’s neonatal intensive care unit, and Amber’s 40-day hospital stay included two surgeries.
The Smiths bought insurance from Anthem Blue Cross through Nevada Health Link in October and made two premium payments in January. Yet the claims are being denied because Amber’s birth year is listed incorrectly on the family’s insurance identification cards, Smith said. It’s one year off — written as 1978, when it should be 1979.
What a shocker. Health insurance companies will do anything to deny care when the bills get large. This is just rescission under another name! Like for post-existing conditions....
Nor has Smith been able to get baby Kinsley added to the family’s insurance, despite “dozens of calls” to Nevada Health Link and Anthem. So despite never missing a $1,300 premium payment, the Smiths are on the hook for all of Kinsley’s follow-up care. What’s more, some of Amber’s specialists have unexpectedly [oh?] abandoned provider networks, leaving the family with unexpected out-of-pocket expenses, he said.
The family’s grand total? Roughly $1.2 million.
That's a lot of money! And it's a two-fer! Not only denial for a post-existing condition, a narrowing network! Ingenious. And the Smiths aren't the only ones: Read more about ObamaCare Clusterfuck: Ginormous medical bills because Nevada Health Link can't fix a typo