Cover Oregon Request Reached Governor’s Office

The U.S. House of Representatives Oversight and Government Reform Committee also requested information about Cover Oregon officials from Governor Kate Brown.

It’s unknown what prompted the U.S. House of Representatives Oversight and Government Reform Committee to back away from holding a hearing on Cover Oregon, the state’s defunct health insurance exchange.

Not only was The Lund Report contacted for information about the key leaders – Rocky King, Dr. Bruce Goldberg and Aaron Patnode, but a similar request landed in Governor Kate Brown’s email box, following a public records request.

According to a Washington DC insider, no hearing was ever on the radar but the Oversight Committee was definitely interested in learning more about what led to the downfall of the state’s exchange.

“Obviously we were willing to cooperate and provide the committee with information they needed for a hearing, but nothing was actually scheduled,” the source told The Lund Report. “With a Congressional inquiry, there’s always that potential, but a hearing date was never discussed.”

The House Oversight and Government Reform Committee investigates and exposes waste, fraud and abuse.

The federal government spent $300 million to have Oracle America Inc. build an exchange for Oregonians to buy health insurance, but its web portal failed to launch in October 2013. Oregon plowed another $26 million into Cover Oregon-related projects. In June, Governor Brown signed Senate Bill 1, dissolving the exchange.

Earlier, Julia Pursell, with the Oversight Committee, had also contacted The Lund Report asking for help in reaching Cover Oregon executives.

She reached The Lund Report because it had published information in the past about these officials, and “any contact information in relation to said persons would be very helpful,” according to an email correspondence.

Its functions have been moved to the Department of Consumer & Business Services with individual enrollment getting underway November 1 on the federal exchange -- HealthCare.Gov., running through January 31.

Second Quarter Enrollment

Enrollment held steady at the end of the second quarter, on June 30 with 241,063 people enrolled inthe individual market and 163,738 in the small group market through the exchange. In the individual market, Moda Health continued leading the pack, 98,073 members, followed by LifeWise with 45,129, Providence, 29,467, Regence, 23305 and Kaiser, 17,203.

In the small group market, according to figures released by the Oregon Insurance Division.  Providence held the lead with 26,093, followed by Kaiser, 25,909, PacificSource, 23,414, Regence, 22,067, with Moda trailing behind with 16,587 members.

Diane can be reached at [email protected]

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