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Wednesday, 14 August 2013 09:10

US health insurance companies caught in IT lie

Written by Nick Farrell

Cleaning up before Obama Care kicks in

US health insurance companies are claiming that the reason that they have to keep screwing tons of cash out of their customers is because their computers are not ready for Obama Care.

One of the things that the Obama Care programme was supposed to stop was a dodgy claw back method by insurance companies. If you got sick, the insurance company might pay for your medical costs, but it would slap a bill on you for “out-of-pocket costs.” One of the Obama’s health care initiative, moves was to cap the amount of to $6,350 for an individual and $12,700 for a family.

However federal officials have granted a one-year grace period to some insurers, allowing them to set higher limits, or no limit at all on some costs, in 2014. The reason that the exemption has been given is because the health insurance companies claim that they have separate computer systems that cannot communicate with one another.

So they have systems which can communicate with each other enough to slap high charges on users, but not ones that can manage low ones. Slashdot pointed out how difficult would it be to rewrite an insurance billing system to aggregate a policyholder's out-of-pocket costs. The feeling is that the problem high lights the fact that many insurers are running out of date systems which are difficult to adapt.

However the fact that they are already doing it to some measure now does make this claim seem a little suspect.

Nick Farrell

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