ObamaCare Clusterfuck: First quote I've seen saying the October 1 date for health exchanges might slip
Uncle Sam has perhaps the biggest hill to climb, especially since final guidance for federally facilitated exchanges has yet to be released. Not only does the government need to be involved in those states, but they also are required to operate a federal data hub, the huge IT system that will electronically communicate with states in determining Medicaid and Children's Health Insurance Program coverage as well as eligibility for premium tax credits
The state-run exchanges appear to be farther along in their exchange preparations, according to policy experts who have been following exchange process. Still, there is some concern about meeting the fall deadline.
“Oct. 1 might get pushed,” says Dan Schuyler, director of exchange technology at Salt Lake City-based consultancy Leavitt Partners. Schuyler, a former technology director for the Utah Health Insurance Exchange, thinks that systems such as the federal data hub as well as state systems that interact with it may not be ready in time, leading to a delay in open enrollment. Without a system to determine premium tax subsidies, “then you would have delayed eligibility verification,” he says.
That could discourage the uninsured from signing up. Medicare subsidies and tax credit determinations need to be made in real time. Applicants can't wait days, weeks or even months to find out whether they qualify for subsidies and how much they will get. Those determinations will factor heavily in their plan selections and could determine whether they sign up at all.
And even if they do sign up, “if (the determination) gets too far down the line, say past 90 days, then an enrollee won't have effective coverage on Jan. 1,” Schuyler says.
Yep. Of course, Sibelius has put a stake in the ground already on the October 1 date:
HHS insists that exchange preparations are running according to schedule, and open enrollment will begin in all 50 states Oct. 1. HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius told members of the Senate Finance Committee this month that “we are definitely going to be open for open enrollment starting Oct. 1 of 2013.”
So, you know they're going to do what any project manager with a rotten product and a drop dead deadline would do: Cross their fingers, bump up the marketing budget, buy some reporters, roll it out, retroactively dumb down the requirements, claim success, claim "learning curve," claim "heavy lift," claim "steady progress," claim "80/20" rule, and all of that. (Special tactic for Democrats: Blame the Republicans!)
Maybe they'll claim that "Enrollment is open, but we never said you would know what the price was..." Maybe they'll film Obama, flashing his famous grin, actually signing up for ObamaCare on a White House laptop! Who knows....
NOTE Of course, LBJ rolled out Medicare for the over-65s in just a year, before computers. No reason Medicare for All couldn't have been rolled out in a similar time frame. That's because singe payer doesn't suck.