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Judicial Watch Obtains 106-Page HHS Document Revealing Scope of Obamacare Rollout Disaster

HHS Records Reveal That Obamacare Received Only One Enrollment on First Day of Operation; 48% of Registrations Failed on Second Day

WASHINGTON, DC -- (Marketwired) -- 05/19/14 -- Judicial Watch today released a 106-page document obtained on May 1 from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), revealing that on its first full day of operation, October 1, 2013, Obamacare's Healthcare.gov received only one enrollment. The document, obtained in response to a November 25, 2013, Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit against HHS, also reveals that on the second day of Healthcare.gov operation, 48% of registrations failed (Judicial Watch v. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (No. 1:13-cv-01855)).

The FOIA lawsuit was filed after HHS failed to respond to an October 7, 2013, Judicial Watch FOIA request seeking the following information:

Any and all records concerning, regarding, or related to the number of individuals that purchased health insurance through Healthcare.gov between October 1, 2013, and October 4, 2013.

The Affordable Health Care Act website, which officially launched on the Tuesday, October 1, immediately encountered substantial problems typical of those reported by the Chicago Tribune: "Consumers seeking more information on their new options under the Affordable Care Act were met with long delays, error messages and a largely non-working federal insurance exchange and call center Tuesday morning." Pressed for an explanation in a conference call with reporters Tuesday afternoon, Marilyn Tavenner, head of the HHS Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, refused to disclose the number of people who had purchased insurance through the site saying, "We have just decided not to release that yet."

The full extent of the failure, however, is reflected in the details provided by the Judicial Watch FOIA document revelations. They include:

On April 17, 2014, President Obama announced that eight million people had signed up for health insurance on Affordable Healthcare Act exchanges. That figure, however, may be substantially over-inflated. According to testimony in May by the America's Health Insurance Plans association before the House Commerce Committee Subcommittee on Oversight, "Because of the challenges that surfaced with the launch of the Exchanges in October 2013, some consumers were advised to create a new account and enroll again. As a result, insurers have many duplicate enrollments in their system for which they never received any payment."

"Once again, Judicial Watch is able to get information through FOIA that no one else had gotten -- the specifics about the unmitigated failure of the Obamacare healthcare.gov collapse," said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton. "The Obama administration tried to cover this up, Congress failed to follow through, but we managed to get the truth about the $667 billion Obamacare website. Imagine what would have happened to Obamacare if the American people knew only one person was able to enroll on its first day? What other Obamacare failures is President Obama hiding?"

In addition to its FOIA lawsuit to obtain enrollment figures for the Healthcare.gov rollout, Judicial Watch, on March 27, 2014, also filed a FOIA lawsuit against the HHS for records regarding the testing and oversight of the Obama administration's error-filled "834" reporting forms. Form 834 is an electronic file sent from HealthCare.gov to an insurance company after a consumer picks a health care coverage plan. An inaccurate 834 form may result in consumers either not having coverage, or being turned down for payment claims. It has been estimated that as many as 33 percent of the 834 forms for enrollees in the federal health care website may have been inaccurate, incomplete, or missing altogether.

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