The CMS will set up a database for consumer inquiries and complaints about the federal and state-based insurance exchanges proposed in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.
Database to track insurance-exchange complaints
According to the notice published in today's Federal Register, the primary purpose of this system, called the Health Insurance Assistance Database, "is to collect and maintain information on consumer inquiries and complaints regarding insurance issuers." Collected data will help the CMS' Center for Consumer Information and Insurance Oversight monitor the insurance exchange programs, according to the notice. "Data also will be used to combat fraud, waste and abuse in government health programs, among other secondary uses," the notice added.
The proposal is open for a 40-day public comment period, which began April 11, the date the notice was submitted to Congress and to the president's Office of Management and Budget.
The healthcare reform law empowers HHS “to ensure that states with exchanges are substantially enforcing the federal standards” and “to set up exchanges in states that elect not to do so or are not substantially enforcing related provisions,” the CMS noted.
The database is to contain assorted details—including names and basic demographic information as well as employment status, veteran status and health insurance status—about complainants and other individuals who contact the oversight body about health insurance issues.
Send us a letter
Have an opinion about this story? Click here to submit a Letter to the Editor, and we may publish it in print.