The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) got off to a fast start with sending accurate applicant information to the new public health insurance exchange system.
Russell Martin and other investigators at the office of the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) have reported findings supporting that assessment in a new report on IRS efforts to support the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) exchange system.
See also: Watchdog: We’re grading IRS PPACA data
The PPACA open enrollment period for individual exchange plans started Oct. 1, 2013 and ended in mid-April in most of the country. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) had trouble with launching HealthCare.gov, the enrollment website for the exchanges it ran. Some states with state-based exchanges had trouble launching their own enrollment systems.
TIGTA looked only at IRS systems, not at HHS or state-based exchange systems. It reviewed records for specific, relatively short periods of time.
The IRS — a division of the U.S. Treasury Department — was responsible for helping exchanges decide whether applicants had provided accurate information about their families and finances, and how much help the applicants could get from the PPACA advanced premium tax credit (APTC) program. The APTC program is supposed to help applicants with incomes from 133 percent to 400 percent of the federal poverty level pay qualified health plan (QHP) premiums.