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CMS Administrator Marilyn Tavenner Testifying on the Hill

The House Ways and Means Committee entertained Marilyn Tavenner, the CMS Administrator who works for HHS Secretary, Kathleen Sebelius today on Capitol Hill. More than any other government official, Tavenner must be feelilng the heat from all sides. CMS was given responsibility, ultimately, from Sebelius for the government contract solicitations and...

Crunch Time for Implementation of The Affordable Care Act

With the appointment last week of Jeffrey Zients to fix the beleagured healthcare.gov Website, the Obama adminstration is scrambling for some good news for the Affordable Care Act which was signed into law in March of 2010. The news of Zients taking responsibility came as no surprise as HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius and even the President have be...

Cutting through the Complexity (Or: Maybe I Should Have a Yard Sale)

I want to talk about my house. It’s a lovely house: it’s on a golf course, with a beautiful view of the 17th green. It’s in northern Virginia, not far from Washington, D.C. It’s got high ceilings and lots of sunshine and is painted pretty colors. When my husband and I bought it, it was just the two of us (well, and our Corgi, Lizzie). It seemed eno...

White House Names Jeffrey Zients to Fix Healthcare.gov

Embattled HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius got some relief earlier this week when the Obama administration named Jeffrey D. Zients to lead the "tech surge" in Washington in hopes of solving the healthcare.gov conundrum. Zients is not a Captiol outsider, on the contrary, he was already in the on-deck circle waiting to take over as chief White House e...

Paul Ryan Calls for Secretary Sebelius's Resignation - Firestorm of Criticism Growing

Kathleen Sebelius, who is President Obama's Secretary for Health and Human Services (HHS) and point person for transforming healthcare in America by implementing the Affordable Care Act (ACA) is under fire as never before. The pivotal element of implementation for ACA was to be the launch of an online portal where the uninsured to shop for health i...

President Tries to Rally Effort to Salvage Online Health Insurance Exchanges

On a beautiful fall morning, with a backdrop of the rose garden, which irionically is usually the exact landscape where the President accepts the resignation of a cabinet member, Barack Obama made his case to the American people to "not give up" on the feds Website (healthcare.gov). He admitted failure and even remarked it was "unacceptable" to him...

Sebelius Asked To Testify Before Congress - Her Response, "I am Unavailable."

These past 3 weeks have probably made for some interesting days and sleepless nights for the Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS), Kathleen Sebelius. For the better part of the summer Sebelius was on the Hill and traveling around the country defending and guaranteeing that the federal Website (healthcare.gov) would be "ready" come the first...

When Can We See Web Analytics for the HIXs Run by the Feds?

Republicans and Democrats, in a surprising bi-partisan request, want to know how the federally run health insurance marketplaces are doing? And patience is waning. With the government back in business and fiscal cliff avoided, albeit momentarily, Congress is sure to call for immediate hearings when the House is back in session next week. The issue...

ACA Implementation and Sustainability in Doubt - Health Insurance Marketplaces May Simply Fade Away

In the hourly give and take between the two houses of Congress as filibusters threaten in the Senate and one political party in the House unravels before the American public, one casualty is almost certain to be recorded, the Patient Protection Affordable Care Act. Signed into law in March of 2010 and then challenged by 26 states before The Supreme...

CMS's Decision to Assume Responsibility for HIX Website Project Management Flawed

In a surprise move early on in the HIX massive IT effort was made by CMS who declared they would assume project oversight and be responsible for ensuring each individually designed database and software was interoperable, or could talk to each other. This was a surprise to over 55 government contractors who were given elements of the HIX IT puzzle ...

Blue Cross and Blue Shield Goes All in On Health Insurance Exchanges

While Aetna and UnitedHealth Group stay on the sidelines, Blue Cross and Blue Shield have entered the online health insurance marketplace business in full-force. The Blues appear to be offering plans pretty much across the U.S. landscape guaranteeing a bold strategy that seems to be initially paying off despite HHS and CMS health IT and Website stu...

HHS Chief Digital Architect for Health Insurance Marketplaces Feared the Worst for October 1st

As early as March of this year, Henry Chao, the Obama Administration's digital guru ultimately responsible to Kathleen Sebelius at HHS and the President for making the federal "data-hub" do what it was intended to do for over a $400 million dollar investment feared the launch of the federal piece of the online health insurance marketplace or exchan...

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