Letter to Kathleen Sebelius, Secretary U.S. Department of Health and Human Services - Affordable Care Act Exchanges

Letter

Date: Nov. 18, 2013
Location: Washington, DC

U.S. Sen. David Vitter (R-La.) is asking U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HSS) Secretary Kathleen Sebelius to provide a report to Congress on the Obamacare exchange enrollment numbers. Vitter wants to know if those who enrolled were previously uninsured, or if they are people who had their current health care policy cancelled.

"It's clear that millions more Americans have lost their health care policy than have enrolled in the Obamacare exchange," Vitter said. "The law's incredibly low success rate for Louisiana means that for every one person enrolled in the federally facilitated exchange, 240 Louisianians had their health care policy cancelled and their access to their doctor diminished."

Vitter is asking HHS to produce a public report with five clear items each month of Obamacare's Open Enrollment Period, along with numbers by no later than April 15, 2014 for a final report.

1. Report how many of the Exchange enrollees were uninsured prior to Obamacare's Open Enrollment Period starting October 1st.
2. Report how many of the Exchange enrollees are among the 5 million Americans who had their health policies cancelled this fall.
3. Report if any of the new Medicaid enrollees had private health insurance prior to Open Enrollment.
4. Report whether there was a net increase or net decrease in the number of Americans with private health insurance.
5. Report these important statistics on a State-by-State basis.

Vitter's letter copied Oversight and Government Reform Chairman Darrell Issa, Ways and Means Chairman Dave Camp, and Energy and Commerce Chairman Fred Upton. Vitter will be working with House Chairmen to ensure the American public receives accurate information in a timely manner.
Below is a copy of Vitter's letter to Sebelius.

November 18, 2013

The Honorable Kathleen Sebelius
Secretary
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
200 Independence Ave, S.W.
Washington, DC 20201

Dear Madam Secretary:

It's clear that millions more Americans have lost their health care policy than have enrolled in the Obamacare exchange. I write today with major concerns with the Administration's response to the high volume of cancelled health care policies as a result of the requirements for "grandfathered health plans" under Obamacare.

More than 5 million plans across the country have been cancelled, including nearly 93,000 policies in my home State of Louisiana. Earlier this week, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released enrollment numbers for the Exchange, reporting that out of 7,702 Louisianans who attempted to enroll in Obamacare a dismal 387 people were able to complete the application and enrollment process. The law's 0.05 percent success rate for my State means that for every one person enrolled in the federally facilitated exchange, 240 hardworking Americans in the State of Louisiana had their health care policy cancelled and their access to their doctor diminished. This is completely contrary to the promise of increased access to quality, affordable health care, not to mention the mantra, "if you like your health plan you can keep it, period" that the President infamously touted 36 times during his campaign to pass this legislation.

The goal of the health care law was originally to expand access to care. WLetter to Kathleen Sebelius, Secretary U.S. Department of Health and Human Shile we clearly have differing opinions on the substance of the law, it is imperative that the Administration have a transparent process tracking the progress the Federal Government has made on making good on their promises to expand access to care and protect those who enjoy their current health care coverage. In order to carry out the promises you have made to millions of Americans, I ask that you produce a public report with five clear items each month of Obamacare's Open Enrollment Period, along with numbers by no later than April 15, 2014 for a final report.

1. Report how many of the Exchange enrollees were uninsured prior to Obamacare's Open Enrollment Period starting October 1st.
2. Report how many of the Exchange enrollees are among the 5 million Americans who had their health policies cancelled this fall.
3. Report if any of the new Medicaid enrollees had private health insurance prior to Open Enrollment.
4. Report whether or not there was a net increase or net decrease in the number of Americans with private health insurance.
5. Report these important statistics on a State-by-State basis.

If Americans are expected to foot the $2 trillion bill for this law, there should be a fair, open, and honest process by which the Federal Government delivers on the promises it has made to those with health insurance and those who were promised they would be able to purchase health insurance under Obamacare.

I look forward to your seeing the results of your monthly reports.

Sincerely,
David Vitter
U.S. Senator
Cc:
Oversight and Government Reform Chairman Darrell Issa
Ways and Means Chairman Dave Camp
Energy and Commerce Chairman Fred Upton


Source
arrow_upward