HealthCare.gov Meeting Notes: Administration Fretting Over Americans Finding “Fewer Options,” “High-cost Plans” on Exchanges

November 4, 2013

WASHINGTON – Today, House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Darrell Issa, R-Calif., released new HealthCare.gov meeting notes stating Administration concerns about what Americans will find once technical website problems are addressed.  The meeting notes show officials fretting over future media inquiries about Americans discovering, “there will be fewer options than would be desired to promote consumer choice” and “in some cases there will be relatively high-cost plans.”

The notes were taken at a 10/28/13 “War Room” meeting at the Center for Consumer Information and Insurance (CCIIO), part of the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) tasked with implementing ObamaCare.

“Related to the NYTimes article, Mike described a general concern of [Project Management]: getting to the point where the website is functioning properly and individuals begin to select plans,” the notes state, “the media attention will follow individuals to plan selection and their ultimate choices; and, in some cases, there will be fewer options than would be desired to promote consumer choice and an ideal shopping experience. Additionally, in some cases there will be relatively high-cost plans.”

On October 23rd, the New York Times reported that rural areas and small towns are seeing limited health insurance choices, with only one or two plans available, and some of the highest prices in their state.

The notes continue, “If PM hasn’t started thinking about this, it should. We are 2-3 weeks out from this period when the spotlight will kick back to PM regarding plan selection.”

PM refers to Project Management who have been leading the creation of a Federally Facilitated Marketplace (FFM).

The documents released today were produced in response to a Committee request sent to 11 of the top contractors involved in the HealthCare.gov roll out.

You can read the 10/28/13 “War Room” notes here.

 

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