As more Affordable Care Act deadlines approach, several states have been unable to make decisions and implement change in time, signaling that many local governments have a lot of work to complete in a short period of time.
In a report set to be released on Wednesday, the Government Accountability Office expressed a lack of confidence in the ability of decision-makers at the federal and state levels to carry out required steps in healthcare reform.
“Whether [the government’s] contingency planning will assure the timely and smooth implementation of the exchanges by Oct. 2013 cannot yet be determined,” the document reportedly concludes.
The GAO stated that as of March 2013, President Barack Obama’s administration had spent nearly $400 million on elements of the Affordable Care Act, including healthcare benefits exchanges, according to The Associated Press.
Less than half of the states have decided they will take on the full responsibility of creating local online marketplaces where residents and employers can shop for and purchase insurance coverage. The federal government is therefore taking the lead on setting up exchanges in 27 states and will work in partnerships with seven states to create and manage systems.
The report acknowledged that Washington has made progress toward achieving the goals of healthcare reform.
“Nevertheless, much remains to be accomplished within a relatively short period of time,” the GAO study said.