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CCHF Health Freedom eNews

March 26, 2014



 

Obamacare is Still “Unborn”

Obamacare's exchange system has yet to be fully born. Despite its October 1, 2013 "rollout," six months and more than $677 million dollars later this baby has not yet fully emerged. We've seen it gasping for air as glitches hit. We've seen it waving its arms with ad after ad. Other times it appears to be sleeping. But, despite all assertions otherwise, it's still firmly stuck in an "unborn" state.  

 

Lest you forget, in November, Henry Chao, the head of building the Obamacare Exchange, confessed to Congress that the "back-end" financial and accounting operations were not yet built. Nearly two months after its disastrous rollout, Chao testified that 30-40 percent of Healthcare.gov hadn't even been constructed. The federal government had no way to connect with other state or federal databases to verify eligibility and transfer payments for taxpayer-funded premium subsidies.

 

As one source told CNBC, rolling out the exchange without with back-end operations in place is, "like setting up an online bank without setting up a way to make deposits."  The Senate Republican Policy Committee also reported:

 

"[T]he Obama Administration believes that failure to deliver specific Financial Management Platform functions - such as enrollments, subsidies, cost sharing reductions, and insurer payment plans - 'by mid-March 2014 will result in financial harm to the Government.'"

 

Indeed, the January 3, 2014 one-year HHS no-bid contract for "urgently needed Federal Facilitated Marketplace (FFM) functionality" for Healthcare.gov (FFM) says,

 

"Without a Financial Management Platform ... the entire health care reform program is jeopardized."

 

The fed is not close to building this platform. It is almost April, but federal officials testified on January 16, 2014 that the temporary payment process put in place to pay health plans with taxpayer dollars "won't be abandoned any time soon," according to healthpolicynewstand.com. This temporary system "allows insurers to calculate the amount of federal payments they're owed for HealthCare.gov customers," reports Daily Caller.

 

Your taxpayer dollars are in play. The temporary payment process means health plans have been authorized to tell government how much they, the plans, are owed and how much the government shall pay them. So, when is the last time the government agreed to pay you without having all the facts in hand? The administration's desperation is showing.

 

A chart from Xerox, reported by The Washington Post shows the complexity of exchange functions. Essentially all the connections after "Enroll" aren't built:

 

 

 

 

 

 

Is this why HHS is clueless? Federal officials maintain they have no idea who has actually enrolled (paid). Although health insurers say the feds know more than they admit, the failure to build the back-end functionality means there's a real possibility HHS is in the dark. Monday, March 31 is the last day of open enrollment for Obamacare...sort of. New extensions have just been announced.

 

Obamacare's birthday celebration on Sunday was muted. Four years after Obama signed it into law, the federal exchange, which is the law's implementation center, is not on sure footing. Lawsuits assail it. The financing is sketchy. Private data is insecure. Taxpayers are on the hook for billions. And more than 30% of it isn't even built.

 

Let's keep it that way... all the way to repeal. Donate today to our efforts to stop Obamacare until repeal is possible!

 

Refusing to enroll,

 

Twila Brase

President and Co-founder

CCHFREEDOM.ORG

 

 


 


 




News to Know:

Time to Free Justina!

Here in the USA, the "Clinical and Investigation Policy and Procedure Manual" of a modern-day state-chartered children's teaching hospital states, "Children who are wards of the state may be included in research that presents minimal risk... or greater than minimal risk with a prospect of direct benefit." Teenager Justina Pelletier is at the center of a scary legal battle between her family and Boston Children's Hospital over custody (essentially government kidnapping) and questionable medical treatment by the hospital.



Big Week for CCHFreedom

Last Friday afternoon, a group of hearty CCHF supporters and one dog "Teddy" came for a quick and very chilly photo shoot beneath the CCHF "Obamacare Games" billboard. As temps rapidly plunged, shutters clicked. Then on Saturday, the Post Bulletin in Rochester Minnesota reported Mayo Clinic lost the multi-million dollar MDH contract for newborn screening. Discussing privacy concerns and showing how little he knows about CCHF, Dr. R. Rodney Howell at the University of Miami claimed CCHF president Brase is "an individual that sells herself as the Citizens' Council for Health Freedom." Then on Sunday, the liberal Star Tribune wrote an editorial against the CCHF billboard campaign. We've clearly rattled their cages!



Powerful Anti-ACA Lawsuit Back in Court

Yesterday, an appellate court in the District of Columbia heard Halbig v. Sebelius. The plaintiffs argue that the Obama administration is illegally providing premium subsidies (insurance tax credits) through Healthcare.gov. The law allows subsidies only through state-based exchanges, not the federal exchange. So far, two such lawsuits have been thrown out, but don't expect the plaintiffs to quit. Both are on appeal, the second one in May. Sam Kazman, general counsel for the CEI is coordinating the cases.



Pelosi Lectures Media on "Obamacare"

U.S. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, on C-SPAN: "[I]t's called the Affordable Care Act. ... Affordable. Affordable. There's a reason. Affordable. Affordable. Affordable. Affordable. Affordable. The reason they changed the name of it is because they wanted to get away - the opponents - from the word affordable. And that's why I'm patient with some of these comments. Whatever it is, it's infinitely more affordable than the path that we're on without the Affordable Care Act."



Orthodontist Seeks Injunction

"I am tired of Washington, D.C. picking winners and losers," said Dr. Larry Kawa. Judicial Watch has filed a lawsuit on Dr. Kawa's behalf, challenging the Obama Administration's delay of the employer mandate. Kawa Orthodontics argues that the delay caused the company to lose substantial dollars spent preparing to offer government-approved health insurance coverage to employees by January 1, 2014 to avoid paying the Obamacare penalty.



Obamacare Premiums to Double

While campaigning, President Obama said he would enact a health care law that would "cut the cost of a typical family's premium by up to $2,500 a year." While insurance analysts expect rates to vary substantially, 2014 premiums are expected to increase by double and even triple digits in parts of the country. Areas with older, sicker or smaller populations are likely to be hit hardest.



DOJ: We Won't Enforce the Law

To quash a lawsuit brought by Sen. Ron Johnson, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) has characterized one of Obamacare's regulations as unenforceable. The Wisconsin Republican has sued the Obama Administration for forcing him to decide which of his staffers is forced onto the Obamacare Exchange. The Department of Justice argues that Johnson's suit should be tossed because there is no threat of enforcement.



$1 Billion on Obamacare Ads?

When all is said and done a media firm estimates that more than $1 billion will be spent on advertising for and against Obamacare. With $500 million already spent, Kaiser Family Foundation polling shows that public opinion has remained relatively static regarding the law with 35 percent approving and 43 percent disapproving. With the upcoming November 4 elections, the advertising war will likely have political consequences due to timing of full implementation.



$29 Billion Failed Military EHR Project

A new Government Accountability Office (GAO) report, discusses the U.S. Dept. of Defense' and the Veterans Administration's failed attempt to integrate electronic health records (EHR). The VA system has 104 separate computer applications including 56 provider apps, 19 management and financial apps, 8 registration, enrollment, and eligibility apps, 5 health data apps, and others customized at 128 VA sites. The estimated cost was $29 billion through 2029.



Genetic Research Project -- With Consent

The National Institute of Health recently added a substantial set of genetic health information regarding older adults to an online database making it the largest ever resource for researchers. Data includes electronic medical records, behavioral and demographic information from surveys, and saliva samples from 200,000 participants obtained with informed consent for genomic and other analyses. The genetic information allows researchers to explore the genetic underpinnings of depression, insomnia, diabetes, and many other disease domains.



Nationwide EHRs:  Limping Along

Obama has poured more than $20 billion into electronic medical records with very little planning to make a national medical records system a reality. Due to HIPAA's "anti-privacy rule," there is no patient consent for making private data accessible to 2.2 million entities through this national system. The GAO cited challenges related to insufficient data standards, concerns about state-by-state privacy restrictions, difficulties matching patients to their own records, and high costs.



Enrollment Rolls On...Into April

Maryland, Massachusetts, Nevada, Oregon, Vermont and Washington are six states that will offer Obamacare extensions to citizens thwarted by technological problems on the online health insurance exchanges. Obama has now also decided Healthcare.gov will also offer extensions. New guidelines are expected. Ironically, the federal government states it does not have the authority to extend the deadline for individuals who did not seek coverage through the inoperable exchanges.




Quote of the Week:





"Push as hard as you can. The higher the numbers, the more certitude this thing is going to last forever." - Vice President Joe Biden to the National Association of Community Health Centers conference about enrollment in the Obamacare exchange, March 21, 2014, POLITICO, 3/21/2014.




Stat of the Week:

2.4 to 3.5 million - people have enrolled in Medicaid as result of Obamacare in a study comparing sign-ups between October 2013 and January 2014. This is far less than reported by HHS.

 

 




News Release of the Week:

Minnesota on Precipice of Repealing Genetic Privacy

ST. PAUL, Minn. - Minnesota State House and Senate committees have passed a controversial bill on genetic privacy that would strip parents of initial right of consent in having their baby's DNA researched and stored indefinitely. Continue reading




Featured Health Freedom Minute:

STUDY: Intense Doctor Angst over EMRs

The 2009 Recovery Act has radically reduced physician satisfaction. The lawʼs incentives and penalties to adopt interoperable, government-certified electronic health records have made doctors quite unhappy. Continue reading

Twila Brase broadcasts a daily, 60-second radio feature, Health Freedom Minute, which brings health care issues to light for the American public. Health Freedom Minute airs on the entire American Family Radio Network, with more than 150 stations nationwide in addition to Bott Radio Network with over 80 stations nationwide.

Click here to listen to this week's features.

Citizens' Council for Health Freedom
161 St. Anthony Avenue, Ste 923
St. Paul, MN 55103
Phone: 651.646.8935 • Fax: 651.646.0100
Email: info@cchfreedom.org
www.cchfreedom.org



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