Obamacare Gets Some Good News
blamed the employer mandate delay on technical failures related to computer reporting systems, and observers worried that state-level exchanges wouldn’t launch on October 1st.A flurry of news stories today suggests that this particular ACA crisis has passed. California is now confident its exchange will launch in time, and the White House announced yesterday that a central technical feature of the law—the “data hub” that verifies people’s information—is complete. Moreover, contractors working on the ACA’s backend testified before Congress yesterday that things are proceeding smoothly.Not everything is coming up roses for the implementation process, however. WaPo reports today that scam artists are exploiting the confusion surrounding Obamacare to bilk individuals and businesses. Schemes have already been reported in 20 states, and the number is growing. The failure of the HHS to verify eligibility for subsidies will only increase the total amount of fraud around the law.But it’s important to remember that the main concern with the ACA was never technical, and that technical failures or successes alone aren’t fundamental to judging the impact of the law. Will enough young people sign up for insurance to keep the program afloat? Will premiums be affordable for a majority of people? These are the real questions haunting the ACA’s implementation, and we still don’t know the answers. Yet, the more data we get, the more dubious we become.