The administration’s “mismanagement” of the Obamacare navigator program has exposed millions of Americans to the possibility of fraud and poses a serious risk to consumers’ personal information, the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee concluded in a report released Monday.
The House committee warned in September that the navigator program, which was created to help consumers get through the process of enrolling in the online health care exchanges, could expose Americans to rampant fraud.
Now, Department of Health and Human Services “documents call into question the effectiveness of these outreach programs, and, more importantly, the Administration’s ability to safeguard consumer information,” Monday’s report said.
It takes the September warning a step further, concluding that HHS has put Americans at risk by failing to establish a contingency plan for the navigator program in the event that healthcare.gov crashed – which it did, multiple times.
“HHS’s mismanagement of the Navigator and Assister programs induces fraudulent behavior and poses real threats to the safety of consumers’ personally identifiable information, such as ones social security number, yearly income and other sensitive tax information,” the House report reads.
The report blames a “lack of background checks” and “inadequate training standards, and weak Administration oversight plan for Navigators and Assisters” for the program’s many shortcomings
The House cites recent claims that some navigators have been encouraging consumers to submit fraudulent personal information, adding that certain navigators have also reportedly been handing out false information.