Tag: Federal Insurance Exchange

Will the Federal Health Insurance Exchanges Be Ready On Time?

After months of speculation on just where the Obama administration is toward the development of the new health insurance exchanges, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) has issued a 48-page report complete with timelines and a detailed report on just where the Obama administration is––or at least was last month.

The key summary:

“Much  progress  has  been  made,  but  much  remains  to  be  accomplished  within  a   relatively  short  amount  of  time.  CMS’s  timelines  provide  a  roadmap  to   completion;  however,  factors  such  as  the  still-­evolving  scope  of  CMS’s  required   activities  in  each  state  and  the  many  activities  yet  to  be  performed—some  close   to  the  start  of  enrollment—suggest  a  potential  for  challenges  going  forward.  And   while  the  missed  interim  deadlines  may  not  affect  implementation,  additional   missed  deadlines  closer  to  the  start  of  enrollment  could  do  so.  CMS  recently   completed  risk  assessments  and  plans  for  mitigating  risks  associated  with  the   data  hub,  and  is  also  working  on  strategies  to  address  state  preparedness   contingencies.  Whether  these  efforts  will  assure  the  timely  and  smooth   implementation  of  the  exchanges  by  October  2013  cannot  yet  be  determined. ”

Regarding the Data Hub:

“FFEs  [the federal exchanges] along  with  the  data  services  hub  services  are  central  to  the  goal   under  PPACA  of  having  health  insurance  exchanges  operating  in  each   state  by  2014,  and  of  providing  a  single  point  of  access  to  the  health   insurance  market  for  individuals.  Their  development  has  been  a  complex   undertaking,  involving  the  coordinated  actions  of  multiple  federal,  state,   and  private  stakeholders,  and  the  creation  of  an  information  system  to   support  connectivity  and  near  real-­time  data  sharing  between  health   insurance  exchanges  and  multiple  federal  and  state  agencies.  Much   progress  has  been  made  in  establishing  the  regulatory  framework  and   guidance  required  for  this  undertaking,  and  CMS  is  currently  taking  steps   to  implement  key  activities  of  the  FFEs,  and  developing,  testing,  and   implementing  the  data  hub.  Nevertheless,  much  remains  to  be   accomplished  within  a  relatively  short  amount  of  time.  CMS’s  timelines   and  targeted  completion  dates  provide  a  roadmap  to  completion  of  the   required  activities  by  the  start  of  enrollment  on  October  1,  2013.

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