Healthcare.gov’s Skyrocketing Costs *Open Thread*

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Lest it get lost in all the recent threats of continued lawlessness by Obama and his supporting cast of Democrats to grant amnesty to illegal aliens, or Obama having the CIA* (Executive Branch) spy on the Senate Intelligence Committee (Legislative Branch), there are some other reports coming out that should be noted. (* But hey, Obama still has “full confidence” in John Brennan – despite the fact that Brennan violated the CONSTITUION, an “impeachable offense,” according to Judge Napolitano. Oh, wait – Obama ALSO broke the law and violated the Constitution. What else is new? Yawn…)

Specifically, I am referring to a number of articles dealing with Obamacare. Yes, the law that Obama changes willy-nilly, and which continues to decline in the polls. There are good reasons for that, some of which I will be detailing below, beginning with a very good piece by intrepid reporter Sharyl Attkisson.

Attkisson’s piece, HealthCare.gov’s Costly Flubs, highlights just what a colossal waste of money this program has been, especially when one considers the low number of people enrolled in it. Indeed, what “flubs” they are:

[…] The GAO report faults the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) under the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), which was led by Secretary Kathleen Sebelius. Sebelius announced her resignation in April following the disastrous launch of the government-run website, as well as revelations about serious security concerns.

Though the GAO blames federal officials for not correctly predicting and troubleshooting problems, the Obama administration has not made any public move to hold federal officials accountable.

The GAO says that by March 2014, CMS reported “obligating $840 million for the development of HealthCare.gov and its supporting systems.” Congress and reporters had repeatedly asked the government for total costs and breakdowns, but they were not provided. Freedom of Information requests I filed last year shortly after the website’s launch are still unanswered.

Gee, what a surprise. The Administration has refused to address where over $800 MILLION dollars has gone of OUR money. We already know what a huge waste the software was, but it seems that was merely the tip of the iceberg:

[…] In March, President Obama claimed wild success, stating that 8 million Americans had signed up for health plans through Obamacare. In fact, the federal government has refused to release relevant documents and figures, but–in calculating its 8 million enrollment figure–it improperly counted patients who hadn’t paid. Furthermore, as revealed in my investigation in June, there are only an estimated 3.4 million previously-uninsured among the enrollees, much fewer than projected, providing reason for great “disappointment” among some Obamacare developers and supporters.

The Obama administration has, to date, declined to provide documentation showing how high risk security findings have been mitigated or fixed. Internal assessments prior to the website’s launch, as well as testimony from Obama administration officials after launch, documented the most serious form of security risk concerns associated with HealthCare.gov. Project leader Henry Chao testified he was unaware of the high risk security findings unearthed by the government’s security assessment firm. […] (Click here to read the rest of this disturbing report.)

And of course, premiums continue to go up. Just recently, the Florida Insurance Commission reported increases in premiums. From the Daily Caller:

[…] Eight plans on the Obamacare exchange are boosting their premiums, all by double digits — from 11 percent to 23 percent. Three health plans will cut rates by a lesser five percent to 12 percent. That’s a drastic increase for close to one million Florida Obamacare customers — the second-largest enrollment of any individual state.

The Florida Office of Insurance Regulation noted that just as premiums are increasing, out-of-pocket costs are adding up as well — and federal subsidies may not take much of the edge off for working families.

“Even with a federal subsidy, that could mean an out-of-pocket cost of $500 or more per month to have coverage that still requires Florida families to pay about 30 percent of expenses out-of-pocket for deductibles, copayments, and coinsurance,” the department charged in a press release.[…]

Can you believe that? THIRTY SEVEN PERCENT? Well, I sure can, since our premiums have already gone up and are slated to go up an additional THIRTY PERCENT in December, all thanks to Obamacare.

But wait, there’s more out of Florida:

[…] Florida’s exchange sign-ups were drastically older than insurers expected. While the Obama administration hoped for 40 percent of nationwide sign-ups to be between the ages of 18 and 34, Florida’s young invincible sign-ups come in at just 23 percent of all exchange enrollees.

The age mix is the primary motivation for some of the rate hikes. The exchange’s largest insurer, Florida Blue, announced its 17.6 percent hike last week and has cited the older-than-expected exchange population.

“We will be under tremendous financial pressure initially, given the age, risk profile, and high utilization of the new membership,” said Florida Blue CEO Patrick Geraghty. “It is far from clear that large enrollment in the marketplace is a financially beneficial place to be.” (Click here to read the rest.)

I suppose it shouldn’t be a big surprise to learn that, as predicted by those of us who actually pay attention, doctors are refusing Obamacare patients now. From the Daily Caller:

[…] For a typical quick patient visit, Dr. Doug Gerard, a Connecticut internist, told NPR a private insurer would pay $100 while Medicare would pay around $80. But Obamacare plans are more likely to pay closer to $80, which Gerard says is unsustainable for his practice.

“I cannot accept a plan [in which] potentially commercial-type reimbursement rates were now going to be reimbursed at Medicare rates,” Dr. Gerard told NPR. ”You have to maintain a certain mix in private practice between the low reimbursers and the high reimbursers to be able to keep the lights on.”

Narrow networks have become a hallmark of many Obamacare exchange plans, as one of few options left to insurance companies that allows them to save money by lowering reimbursement rates and covering fewer providers. In the health-care law’s first year, 70 percent of all Obamacare plan networks were either narrow or ultra-narrow, according to an analysis from consulting firm McKinsey.

But doctors are feeling even more financial pressure due to the changes and many believe there’s a risk that Obamacare insurance will go the way of Medicaid, where patients still struggle to find a doctor after low reimbursement rates led many physicians to stop accepting it. […] (Click here to read the rest.)

In other words, Obamacare is turning out to be the debacle the majority of Americans KNEW it was going to be.

But with everything else going on these days, and with the continued threats of lawlessness by Obama, who is going to be addressing this ill-conceived, ill-prepared, ill-executed, law? Hopefully, that is what the upcoming elections will do. I just hope it isn’t too late…

What do you think? This is an Open Thread.

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38 Responses to “Healthcare.gov’s Skyrocketing Costs *Open Thread*”

  1. kenoshamarge Says:

    What a surprise – not. We all ready knew that Obama was a serial liar, we knew the media was lying for him, we knew the Dems were lying too and then trying to distance themselves from the chaos they voted to inflict on us but not on themselves.

    Any wonder the public is outraged?

    Even Chuck Todd, usual Obama ass-kisser is admitting that the latest poll is “brutal”. Ya think you corrupt, biased, useless excuse for a reporter?

    Hope And Change: NBC Poll Finds Large Majority Of Americans Think Country Is A Mess…

    Remember all those promises of a bright future Obama made in 2008? Yeah, pretty much the exact opposite happened.

    http://weaselzippers.us/195555-hope-and-change-nbc-poll-finds-large-majority-of-americans-think-country-is-a-mess/

    When Chuck Todd can’t “spin” it for Obama it means it is probably even worse than he says – and he says “brutal”!

    • Rabble Rouser Reverend Amy Says:

      I was pretty surprised when I saw that the latest terrible poll results were from an NBC poll. You know that must have completely freaked them out. I mean, really – after ALL they have/had done to prop him up, how could he still be doing so poorly?!?

      Oh, I know: because peoples’ salaries have gone down; their expenses have gone up; our Southern borders have been thrown wide open; there is massive corruption in the IRS, HHS, and State Dept.; and people are believing their own eyes instead of the smoke NBC keeps blowing.

      Thanks for the great comment!

  2. foxyladi14 Says:

    Lost Chucky and even Brawney Franks. 😆

    • Rabble Rouser Reverend Amy Says:

      Can you believe that abt Barney Frank making those comments abt Obama’s lying on Obamacare?? Where the hell was HE back when this thing was voted on by the Dems in the House, I’d like to know? But yeah – telling that!

  3. foxyladi14 Says:

    Most voters agree with Republicans in Congress that the president does not have the right to change laws without Congress’ approval, but they doubt a House lawsuit will stop him from acting on his own.

    The House voted last week to sue President Obama for exceeding his constitutional authority by making changes in the new national health care law after it had been passed by Congress. A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that only 22% of Likely U.S. Voters believe the president should be able to change a law passed by Congress if he thinks the change will make the law work better.

    http://www.rasmussenreports.com/public_content/politics/general_politics/july_2014/voters_oppose_obama_acting_alone_but_don_t_think_house_can_stop_him

    • Rabble Rouser Reverend Amy Says:

      I suppose that’s good, but why in the hell do almost 1/4 of Americans polled think the PRESIDENT can change a law whenever he damn well pleases?? That is truly, truly disturbing, and must be those who will follow whatever Obama wants no matter what…

      Seems we need some more School House Rock…

      • kenoshamarge Says:

        Some of those who think he can pretty much do as he pleases may simply be obots who approve of whatever he does. Legal or otherwise.

        But I think a lot of it is from the lack of Civics taught in school these days. Aside from the very poor quality of education many of our young people get is the lack of understanding of how the government works. Or is supposed to work. Many haven’t a clue.

        Old bats like me got a thorough grounding in Civics and thus know that much of what is happening is wrong and often illegal.

        But then when you have a corrupt POS like Eric Holder in charge at the DOJ it isn’t at all surprising that the laws of this country mean nothing to those who are sworn to uphold them.

        • foxyladi14 Says:

          Yes. 😡

        • Rabble Rouser Reverend Amy Says:

          No doubt you are ight abt Civics, Marge. But when you ee all these middle aged people take leave of their Civic senses and cheer on Obama’s proclamation that he isn’t just going to sit here and twiddle his thumbs nd wait for the process, it is mighty disconcerting.

          and Holder is crook. He should have been impeached some time ago, IMHO…

  4. kenoshamarge Says:

    How about this crap folks?

    Cop: ‘If Obama Doesn’t Follow the Constitution, We Don’t Have To’

    “I don’t give a damn”

    • Rabble Rouser Reverend Amy Says:

      Well, in THAT case, I guess people don’t have to do what police officers tell them to do, either, right? I mean, really – if we are not an anarchy, then this police officer can’t tell someone they have to leave a building for any reason other than bullying them.

      And this is the legacy that Obama is leaving. We knew it was coming, though – how could it not? You cannot have the POTUS willfully disregarding the law and not expect that to trickle down. That is the “change” Obama has brought – a disregard for the law and the Constitution. Awesome.

      • kenoshamarge Says:

        Exactly Rev! The POTUS should if nothing else set an example for the citizens of this country.

        And I am so tired of Presidents from both parties NOT representing the People of this country. People on both sides of the aisle. Obama has done nothing but denigrate Republicans for 6 years and there is no reason to think he will do anything different in his last two years in office.

        He is POTUS – not President of the Democrat Party. This is just wrong and it is wrong when Republicans do it too. Although I must say that I don’t remember Bush being so devisive. I think I would have noticed since I loathed his administration. Loathed Cheney most of all.

        • Rabble Rouser Reverend Amy Says:

          EXACTLY right, Marge – Obama is supposed to represent ALL Americans, not just Democrats. He has so demonized the other side that he has made non-partisanship difficult indeed, not just in Congress, but between Americans. The references by high level Dems equating Reps to TERRORISTS, for heaven’s sake (though they won’t call actual terrorists terrorists), has really done a grave disservice to this nation.

          And I think you are right. Like you, I hated Bush during his tenure, but I sure don’t remember him targeting the other side like Obama does. I think Dems would have gone BALLISTIC if he had. Not so with Obama. It is truly disturbing.

  5. foxyladi14 Says:

    Ernest must be Joshing. 😦

    • Rabble Rouser Reverend Amy Says:

      Isn’t he incredible?! Honestly, I don’t know how a bolt of lightning doesn’t come down and strike him when he is lying and distorting the truth so much.

  6. foxyladi14 Says:

    Obama mentioned himself 68 times in 44 minutes. 😯

    https://grabien.com/story.php?id=12376

    • kenoshamarge Says:

      Once again proving what he finds most important in the world – himself!

    • Katherine B Says:

      “Obama mentioned himself 68 times in 44 minutes.” But he can’t mention one murdered Army General in 48 hours. The next time he speaks in front of a military audience, I hope those soldiers will remember that.

    • Rabble Rouser Reverend Amy Says:

      Holy smokes, Katherine – that is quite an observation. Just SMH at Obama’s failure to mention the highest level officer killed in conflict since VIETNAM, for heaven’s sake. WOW.

      Marge, you said it – he’s his favorite topic, and really, the only thing he knows…

      Thanks for the link, Foxy!

  7. foxyladi14 Says:

    this says it all.

    • Rabble Rouser Reverend Amy Says:

      Yes, that does say it all. I was one of those people who constantly went on abt how “dumb” Bush was, despite his having better grades than Kerry (please remember that, at the time, I was a Yellow Dog Dem). I always had some way to justify the discrepancy, no doubt courtesy of Media Matters, or Alternet, or the DNC (same thing, really).

      But yeah – being able to fly a jet is no small thing…

  8. Rabble Rouser Reverend Amy Says:

    A friend just put this up on Facebook. The first five are PERFECT for this post: http://www.nrcc.org/2014/08/04/53-things-president-obama-celebrating-today/?utm_source=Twitter&utm_medium=Social&utm_campaign=Obama53Reasons_20140804_e

  9. Allan Radman, D.C. Says:

    I recently saw a similar article from the state of California stating that healthcare premiums in California have risen much faster than expected. In California we have the full blown exchanges – Covered California. I have also seen other doctors, including MDs, who are not accepting Covered California.

    • Rabble Rouser Reverend Amy Says:

      Thanks, Alan. I have seen some of those articles, too. Since my ins. is through Blue of California (my partner’s company is based there), I have experienced firsthand the effect of the increases. And, I will be experiencing a 30% increase in December as a result of Obamacare.

      There are so many things wrong with this law, from how it was passed, implemented, and constantly changed for political reasons, costing the nation close to a billion dollars already. What a debacle.

      Thanks for weighing in!

  10. kenoshamarge Says:

    Best line about Obama – ever!

    Jonah Goldberg: Obama Doesn’t Think “The Presidency Is Nearly As Big Of Deal As He Is”
    http://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2014/08/06/jonah_goldberg_obama_doesnt_think_the_presidency_is_nearly_as_big_of_deal_as_he_is.html

    • Rabble Rouser Reverend Amy Says:

      I cracked up when Jonah said that last night – he is so funny. And SO accurate. Totally nailed it. Thanks for this, Marge!

      • kenoshamarge Says:

        I am always happy to see Jonah Goldberg on the panel. He makes his point with clarity and humor. I really “like” him.

        • Rabble Rouser Reverend Amy Says:

          Oh, me, too. And I love watching how much he cracks up Kirsten Powers when she is on with him, and Charles as well. He is funny, erudite, and articulate – really like him, too!

  11. kenoshamarge Says:

    Rich Lowry wrote a dandy diagnosis of POTUS. As near perfect as any I’ve seen.

    If you haven’t seen it do not, I repeat do not, drink liquids while reading it. Unless you like cleaning off your computer screen – in which case – drink away.

    The Callow President

    by Rich Lowry

    “‘Stop just hatin’ all the time.” If you haven’t been following the news, you might not know whether this bon mot was uttered by a character on the ABC Family show “Pretty Little Liars” or by the president of the United States.

    Of course, it was the leader of the free world at a Kansas City rally last week, imploring congressional Republicans to start cooperating with him. The line struck a characteristically — and tellingly — juvenile and plaintive note.

    How many books and articles have been written by conservatives seeking to divine the philosophical beliefs and psychological motivations lurking beneath the president’s smooth exterior?

    It’s certainly true that the president is much further left than he’d ever admit, but the deepest truth about Obama is that there is no depth. He’s smart without being wise. He’s glib without being eloquent. He’s a celebrity without being interesting. He’s callow.

    more: http://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2014/08/the-callow-president-109793.html#ixzz39i2KQb00

    • Rabble Rouser Reverend Amy Says:

      That is FANTASTIC, Marge! Lowry is spot on in his assessment. And thanks for the warning, too – glad I took it to heart! 😀

      • kenoshamarge Says:

        I was drinking tea this morning when I read it and I darn near decorated my screen with green tea and pomegranite! I’ve “liked” quite a few of Lowry’s columns in the past but this one is pure gold. The put downs are constant and still so true.

        He’s a celebrity without being interesting. He’s callow.

        Perfect!

  12. foxyladi14 Says:

    The Hammer 🙂

  13. foxyladi14 Says:

    😆

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