The price tag is $600 million. That’s the figure an audit of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) says it cost in the blown supervision of contracts during the creation of HealthCare.gov.
The audit was conducted by the inspector general of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) — who oversees the CMS — over an 11 month period. It found 20 contracts that went to eight companies were improperly supervised or — worse — supervised by personnel who did not have the proper training or qualifications.
Employees overseeing contracts of $10 million or more must undergo 96 hours of training. The CMS ignored the requirement and some contracts worth as much as $50 million were managed by people who were not properly trained. One employee oversaw a $130 million contract without even having lower-level certification required for a $25,000 contract.
The law also required contractors to be trained and in this case they were not trained either.
What got missed is accounting procedures, the identification of delays and millions in cost overruns.
The CMS said it has corrected many of the problems and will take care of the others soon. No word if anyone has been fired. The two people who ran the HHS and the CMS at the time — Kathleen Sebelius and Marilyn Tavenner — have moved on.
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