Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Texas DHHS: Federal Exchanges Down

The Texas State Department of Health and Human Services announced that federal programs and infrastructure are not working. The information is not being properly relayed or passed on to state level agencies who are supposed to be part of the Obamacare system, per the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA).

Families with children who may qualify for either Medicaid or the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP) are being told to direct their applications and inquiries directly to the Texas DHHS offices and to not use the federal online systems.

Here is an excerpt from the TX DHHS release authored by Stephanie Goodman who can be reached at (512)424-6951 for any further inquiries or information. 

Families with children who might qualify for Medicaid or the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) should apply for children’s coverage through the state to avoid a delay in getting help because of problems with the new federal exchange.

The federal health insurance exchange was scheduled to begin accepting applications today. If someone applies through the federal website and is eligible for Medicaid or CHIP, the federal government is supposed to forward the information to the state. However, states recently received word that the federal exchange isn’t yet able to send information to states.

Medicaid and CHIP cover children in families earning up to 200 percent of the federal poverty level, or $47,100 a year for a family of four. The programs provide comprehensive health coverage for more than 3 million Texas children. Families can apply for Medicaid and CHIP at YourTexasBenefits.com.
Texas DHHS Commissioner Dr. Kyle Janek, M.D. stated, "This federal glitch could lead to delays in children getting health coverage. We’ve let workers in our offices around the state know about this issue so they can make sure families have accurate information.”

Texas isn't the only state experiencing severe issues with the Obamacare registration infrastructure. Personnel in New York, New Jersey, and other states have posted outages on Twitter and other social networking sites.

Even more problems with the exchanges and Obamacare registration are coming to light by the hour. According to this article by Sarah Hurtubise at The Daily Caller, over 2,400 individuals' private and confidential personal identifying information was leaked in Minnesota. Elise Viebeck at The Hill corroborates and cites additional sources of the story.