Good News: HHS has resolved 660K data issues; Bad News: 310K more to go
This Just In...
I just received a press release from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (the HHS division which actually operates the federal ACA exchange). The short version: Out of around 970,000 citizenship/immigration data matching issues as of May, they've managed to successfully resolve 450,000 of them and are in the middle of processing another 210,000.
Unfortunately, this means that 310,000 people still have their status in limbo, so they're re-contacting all of them by mail to resolve whatever their issues are by the end of September, or they'll have their policies cut off:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: CMS Media Relations
August 12, 2014 (202) 690-6145
Federal Health Insurance Marketplace: Send in Requested Documents Now to Keep Marketplace Coverage
Administration has closed approximately 450,000 citizenship and immigration status data matching cases and another 210,000 are in progress; warns remaining consumers to respond quickly or their Marketplace coverage could end
The Federal Health Insurance Marketplace began sending notices this week to consumers with a citizenship or immigration data matching issue (also called an inconsistency) who have not responded to previous notices via mail, email, and phone. While the Federal Marketplace has already received documents and cleared a large number of data inconsistencies related to citizenship or immigration status, consumers who have not yet responded must act now and submit supporting documents by September 5 or their Marketplace coverage will end on September 30.
A citizenship or immigration data matching issue can happen when the information reported in a consumer’s application, such as a Social Security or Permanent Resident Card number, is incomplete or different than the information the government has on file. A data inconsistency does not necessarily mean there is a problem with an individual’s eligibility for enrollment; it means that additional information is needed to verify the information provided in an application. However, if these supporting documents are not received, health insurance plans will be terminated in order to ensure program integrity and protect taxpayer dollars.
“The Affordable Care Act is working to make quality health care more affordable and accessible for families. Over the last several weeks, the Marketplace has reminded affected enrollees in the Federally-facilitated Marketplace via mail, email, and phone to send in their supporting documents so they can keep their Marketplace coverage, and insurance companies have reached out directly to these customers as well,” said CMS Administrator Marilyn Tavenner. “The good news is that many have responded — we’ve closed about 450,000 of these cases and have an additional 210,000 cases in progress. However, some still have not responded. We want as many consumers as possible to remain enrolled in Marketplace coverage, so we are giving these individuals a last chance to submit their documents before their coverage through the Marketplace will end.”
We have worked hard to reach each consumer with a data matching issue multiple times. Specifically, the Marketplace has asked consumers five to seven times — via mail, phone and email — to submit their information. These Federal Marketplace and issuer outreach efforts have produced results. In May, we had roughly 970,000 people with citizenship or immigration data-matching errors. Since then, we’ve closed about 450,000 of these cases and have an additional 210,000 cases in progress. We continue to receive up to 60,000 documents a day.
Today, we sent out letters to the approximately 310,000 consumers with citizenship or immigration data matching errors who have not responded asking them to submit their documentation. These notices remind them that in order to keep their coverage they have to submit the outstanding documents by September 5th. If they do not, their Marketplace coverage will end by September 30th.
Consumers whose information are currently being processed or have been verified will not receive these notices. Consumers who have outstanding income verification issues will hear from the Marketplace at a later date. In addition, States that are running their own Marketplaces are reconciling any data matching issues separately – as such, only enrollees who have not submitted any necessary citizenship or immigration documents to the Federally-facilitated Marketplace will receive these notices.
Notices are being sent in English and Spanish and provide straightforward instructions on how to submit the necessary information and keep their coverage. Those receiving this letter should log into their HealthCare.gov account and select their current application to upload their documents. They can also mail their information to our London, KY address. To ensure timely processing, consumers mailing in a copy of their documents should include the bar code page from our notice with their documents. Consumers may also contact our call center at 1-800-318-2596 to see what documents they need to submit and see whether the Marketplace has received their information.
We will continue our outreach to these individuals with two more calls and one more email ask about citizenship and immigration documents before the September 5 deadline. Those who do not respond will receive a final notice in September informing them that their last day of Marketplace coverage will be September 30. In addition, a network of partners, local assistors and other stakeholders including community health centers have been activated in order to help to get the word out and make sure consumers keep their coverage. Consumers may contact one of our partners in their community to get one-on-one help. To find one of these local partners, visit Find Local Help on HealthCare.gov.
“Since this is an urgent matter, we are activating our networks on the ground to reach people directly in the communities where they live. Whether it is online, via our call center, or with one of our local partners, consumers will have a number of ways to find the help they need to continue their coverage,” said Tavenner.
For more helpful tips and the steps these consumers need to take, visit https://www.healthcare.gov/blog/still-need-to-send-documents/
For the number of letters going out by state in the federally facilitated Marketplace visit: http://www.hhs.gov/healthcare/facts/factsheets/2014/08/data-matching-map...