SENATORS DEMAND ANSWERS ON BOTCHED OBAMACARE ENROLLMENT APPEALS PROCESS

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On Thursday, U.S. Senators Orrin Hatch (R-Utah), Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), and Mike Enzi (R-Wyo.) wrote to Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) Administrator Marilyn Tavenner seeking answers on how the agency will process appeals when Americans attempting to enroll in the ObamaCare exchanges through HealthCare.gov are denied coverage due to technical errors.

Earlier this week, the Washington Post reported that roughly 22,000 individuals had appealed HealthCare.gov’s mistakes when they were signing up for insurance. However, CMS does not have the appropriate technology in place to manage appeals. Questioning whether the agency will be able to resolve these appeals promptly and efficiently, the Senators asked CMS to provide details on how long it will be before the technical infrastructure is properly functioning and requested information on the appeals process that is currently in place.

“As Americans continue to endure the badly botched rollout of a website that cost taxpayers hundreds of millions of dollars, we learned recently that thousands of applicants have been unable to correct mistakes on their insurance applications and that CMS does not have a system in place to resolve these mistakes,” wrote the Senators. “This latest impediment has caused individuals to pay more for their insurance or to go without it, and leaves applicants with almost no recourse to fix their problems.”

Hatch is the Ranking Member of the Senate Finance Committee, Alexander is the Ranking Member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee, Grassley is the Ranking Member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, and Enzi is the Ranking Member of the Senate HELP Subcommittee on Children & Families.

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