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Letter to the Honorable Kathleen Sebelius, Secretary of the US Department of Health and Human Services - The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services- Huelskamp Wants Transparency In Waiver Process

Letter

By:
Date:
Location: Dodge City, KS

Dear Secretary Sebelius,

We are writing to request additional information regarding applications for waivers and adjustments to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA).

As of May 13, 2011, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) had granted 1,372 Annual Limit Waivers and granted Medical Loss Ratio adjustments to Maine, New Hampshire and Nevada. The states of Kentucky, Florida, Georgia, North Dakota, Iowa, Louisiana and Kansas and the territory of Guam have submitted requests that have not yet been decided.

Nearly fourteen hundred waivers have been granted in addition to unknown numbers of additional requests that remain pending or have been denied. At rate of nearly 100 per month since the PPACA was signed into law, we are concerned this demonstrates fatal flaws in last year's health reform legislation. In order to better understand your reasons for granting these waivers, we specifically request:

1. All information on the number and type of requests that have been denied by HHS, including the names of all applicants and the city and state where each applicant is based. This includes requests for Annual Limit Waivers, State Innovation Waivers, Medical Loss Ratio adjustments, and any other Affordable Care Act waiver or adjustment.

2. All information on the number and type of requests currently pending that have not been made public on the HHS website, including the names of all applicants, the city and state where each applicant is based, the date when each application was received and the current status of each application.

3. The average length of time HHS takes to decide requests for Annual Limit Waivers, State Innovation Waivers, Medical Loss Ratio adjustments or any other type of waiver or adjustment.

We are asking you to fulfill President Obama's commitment to openness and transparency by providing us with the above information as soon as possible, but not later than June 15, 2011.


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