Health Care Reform Group Gets Waiver from… Health Care Reform?

posted at 6:00 pm on November 14, 2010 by Jazz Shaw

The Hot Air Boss Emeritus has published an updated list of the exploding number of groups and businesses being granted waivers from having to participate in Obamacare. This is one of the more under-reported stories of the entire HCR saga in the mainstream media, in my opinion.

In early October, the Obama administration announced it had granted waivers not only to McDonald’s, but also to several other firms and labor unions.

Now comes word that Torquemada HHS Secretay Kathleen Sebelius has approved a whopping 111 waivers for businesses of all sizes, along with more unions and other providers of health insurance. The escapees include employers of many low-wage and part-time workers whose health insurance plans would otherwise be dropped, including Darden Restaurants — the parent company of the Olive Garden and Red Lobster and other chains, which employ some 34,000 people.

Via Michelle you can read the full list of those not having to participate here. But for me, it’s not just the swelling, raw number of groups being granted waivers, but the size and types of companies and organizations making the list. There are large numbers of small to medium businesses on there, many with less than 25 employees. Weren’t these precisely the types of businesses that Obamacare was supposed to rescue from the evil health insurance system?

But in one of the truly delicious bits of irony discovered while browsing the list of those seeking asylum from the health care overhaul, I discovered the name of New England Health Care. No, it’s not an insurance company. It’s a policy institute. Let’s dig into their mission statement a bit and see what they’re all about, shall we?

Founded in 2002, the New England Healthcare Institute – known as NEHI – is a nonprofit, independent health policy institute dedicated to transforming health care for the benefit of patients and their families.

So an institute dedicated to finding ways to reform the health care system had to apply for an exemption from the administration’s reforms to the health care system? Keep your eyes on the news next week, as I’m fairly sure that the heads of some immigration reform lobbying groups will be deported.

This post was promoted from GreenRoom to HotAir.com.
To see the comments on the original post, look here.


Related Posts:

Breaking on Hot Air

Blowback

Note from Hot Air management: This section is for comments from Hot Air's community of registered readers. Please don't assume that Hot Air management agrees with or otherwise endorses any particular comment just because we let it stand. A reminder: Anyone who fails to comply with our terms of use may lose their posting privilege.

Trackbacks/Pings

Trackback URL

Comments

WTF?

Electrongod on November 14, 2010 at 6:12 PM

George Orwell, please call the red courtesy phone.

Ha, ha…indeed. This is what happens when you have a controlling party that runs on the emotion of politically correct idiocy and self congratulation instead of logic and using what works.

Django on November 14, 2010 at 6:12 PM

What part of “More Equal” don’t you get?/libtard

RalphyBoy on November 14, 2010 at 6:13 PM

Where can I apply for a waiver?

the_moll on November 14, 2010 at 6:14 PM

Can you see the PBS telethon now? “Send a $100 or more donation and you’ll get a free totebag and an Obamacare waiver.”

the_moll on November 14, 2010 at 6:15 PM

This is, bottom line, a clear admission that 0bamacare simply won’t work.

Rebar on November 14, 2010 at 6:18 PM

I would laugh, but…

SouthernGent on November 14, 2010 at 6:21 PM

If you like your health plan, you can keep your health plan (for the conveniently low price of a horrendously expensive waiver).

ted c on November 14, 2010 at 6:22 PM

If this doesn’t make the case for repeal, what does?

Kini on November 14, 2010 at 6:22 PM

“Let them eat cake!!”

Phil-351 on November 14, 2010 at 6:23 PM

Further proof that health care was not the intent of Obamacare.

Slowburn on November 14, 2010 at 6:25 PM

this sets up the system as a win-win-win for the government only. They win on the revenue from the waivers, they win on the premiums from all taxpayers (HC is a TAX), and they have to provide nearly nothing in return. You may be covered, but getting cared for is a whole different story. It’s class warfare straight up.

ted c on November 14, 2010 at 6:27 PM

Where can I apply for a waiver?

the_moll on November 14, 2010 at 6:14 PM

Well I have a few right here for sale, signed by Obama himself. Trust me. His signature has power.

Electrongod on November 14, 2010 at 6:27 PM

Well I have a few right here for sale, signed by Obama himself. Trust me. His signature has power.

Electrongod on November 14, 2010 at 6:27 PM

A dispensation from our Holy Unicorn God is a wonderful thing.

Django on November 14, 2010 at 6:31 PM

Well I have a few right here for sale, signed by Obama himself. Trust me. His signature has power.

Electrongod on November 14, 2010 at 6:27 PM

yeah, with a stroke of a pen he closed this big a$$ prison in Cuba…whoa, that was power…oh wait!?

ted c on November 14, 2010 at 6:33 PM

Maybe the republicans can give us all waivers…why should some get them while others don’t …we should all be treated equal under the law.

tinkerthinker on November 14, 2010 at 6:35 PM

This is one of the worst elements of the health care corruption act. (I won’t even bother to call it reform anymore).

It creates a climate where those with political connections or pull, get exempted, and those who don’t are not.

One law for the privileged. Another for the masses.

Not what I would call “reform”.

Sackett on November 14, 2010 at 6:44 PM

How are they supposed to pay for this monstrosity if waivers keep getting issued?

Kini on November 14, 2010 at 6:48 PM

Seriously, is there anyone in this administration who knows what they’re doing? Governing is just a joke to them. They’re just tossing crap at the wall to see if it will stick and then giving waivers when it doesn’t.

scalleywag on November 14, 2010 at 6:49 PM

Notice how many union groups have received waivers, including several SEIU groups?

onlineanalyst on November 14, 2010 at 6:59 PM

Notice how many union groups have received waivers, including several SEIU groups?

onlineanalyst on November 14, 2010 at 6:59 PM

Also notice how these were the biggest advocates for this legislation. Why would someone advocate for a bill, then attempt to escape its effects? Obviously, because its harmful legislation. These organization that advocated for, and now request a waiver from this heinous bill are dishonest people. This is obviously malevolent legislation.

ted c on November 14, 2010 at 7:06 PM

“Hey, you know that really awesome new healthcare law that we wanted you to impose on everyone else? Yeah, well do you think we could get out of it somehow because it really, like, costs a lot? Awesome, thanks Prez.”

UnFnbelievable.

JohnInCA on November 14, 2010 at 7:08 PM

So tell me again, at which point do we get to say, “Told you so?”

Chewy the Lab on November 14, 2010 at 7:09 PM

Their whole idea in passing this boondoggle was to make sure everyone had access to affordable health care, and now all you have to do is get a waiver so you don’t have to provide it? What a crock. I mostly blame Pelosi for this travesty. She’s the one who insisted it get rammed through. I doubt she even comprehends what it is.

scalleywag on November 14, 2010 at 7:12 PM

Keep in mind boys & girls, this is but ONE page of 2000 or so…..there’s a lot more fun coming our way.

Tim Zank on November 14, 2010 at 7:14 PM

the stench of cronyism and corruption (intellectual and otherwise) hangs over this administration

I suppose the newspapermen have been disappointed in him…but they are sure not going to go after this. They are true believers in the Utopian dream of the last century.

r keller on November 14, 2010 at 7:18 PM

Maybe congress could just issue a blanket waiver for the entire country and work on a real plan.

petunia on November 14, 2010 at 7:25 PM

Hope and change for thee, but not for me. ObamaCare? No thanks. I have a medical condition.

Paul-Cincy on November 14, 2010 at 7:31 PM

The Hot Air Boss Emeritus has published an updated list of the exploding number of groups and businesses being granted waivers from having to participate in Obamacare.
================================================
Well, Hopey/Changey’s HealthCare keeps on a reek’n
to high heaven,

so umm,if you kmow a guy who knows a guy,they might get
you a waiver card!!

canopfor on November 14, 2010 at 7:32 PM

Maybe congress could just issue a blanket waiver for the entire country and work on a real plan.

petunia on November 14, 2010 at 7:25 PM

petunia: Now that,is,COMMON SENSE,baby:)

canopfor on November 14, 2010 at 7:33 PM

Further proof that health care was not the intent of Obamacare.

Slowburn on November 14, 2010 at 6:25 PM

Since 1944 the communist and socialist of our country have been trying to get national health care in our country. The reason had nothing to do with healthcare. They reasoned that America would reject their socialist goals, but they knew it would be hard for an American to deny healthcare to someone who needed it. Once they had it, there were no boundries into how far into our lives it can reach.

For those that have missed it, the communist leaders were pushing for a Democratic victory in the elections with comments that if they lose, their goals of changing America to a socialist state maybe pushed back for decades.

Franklyn on November 14, 2010 at 7:35 PM

I think the fact that you are having wavers seems to fly in the face of ‘equal protection under the law’.

clement on November 14, 2010 at 7:36 PM

What exactly does a waiver from Obamacare get you? You DON’T have to cover 26 year old children? You DON’T have to cover pre-existing conditions? Is this something my new favorite congressman Issa can investigate?

ctmom on November 14, 2010 at 7:40 PM

The day American journalism decided to look the other way while Congress passed a law it had not read, from which it had exempted itself, over the protests of hundreds of thousands of citizens, was the day I knew without question that journalism is a profession of cheap whores.

Watchdog, you can kiss my ass.

drunyan8315 on November 14, 2010 at 7:43 PM

If this were all some Hollywood movie, I’d LOL. However, since it isn’t, this torques me off. How do these people live with themselves? Seriously. They have no honor, decency, or conscience apparently. They make me sick.

pannw on November 14, 2010 at 7:47 PM

almost a bigger question not raised yet……..who asked for waivers and didnt receive them?

Do they happen to be the same as GOP donars list??????

as were the Car dealership closing?

sbark on November 14, 2010 at 7:53 PM

Why not simply make everyone exempt? You don’t have to repeal the law if it doesn’t apply to anyone.

Fred 2 on November 14, 2010 at 7:55 PM

Is the Legacy Media reporting this?

visions on November 14, 2010 at 8:01 PM

HealthCare WaiverGate
==========================

canopfor on November 14, 2010 at 8:06 PM

HHS Secretay Kathleen Sebelius has approved a whopping 111 waivers for businesses of all sizes

This is nothing more than creeping genocide!
Jesse Jackson

TN Mom on November 14, 2010 at 8:09 PM

almost a bigger question not raised yet……..who asked for waivers and didnt receive them?

Do they happen to be the same as GOP donars list??????

as were the Car dealership closing?

sbark on November 14, 2010 at 7:53 PM

sbark: That was brought up by Bachmann OverDrive to bolster
your arguement!:)
==========================================================

We Now Have A Total Gangster Government
Michelle Bachmann

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=thR-lVuztIY

canopfor on November 14, 2010 at 8:12 PM

Wonderful. The If-And-Butt pages of the law will rival the tax code. We might even need a Department of If-And-Butt to make sure we understand it all.

Limerick on November 14, 2010 at 8:12 PM

For those that have missed it, the communist leaders were pushing for a Democratic victory in the elections with comments that if they lose, their goals of changing America to a socialist state maybe pushed back for decades.

Franklyn on November 14, 2010 at 7:35 PM

I’m not one to label too many people “communist” because it’s not productive and usually not accurate. The CPUSA is a small collection of freaks with little influence.

That being said, if you look at what the CPUSA is advocating it’s pretty close to what is considered by many to be “moderate” Democrat positions. See for yourself.

visions on November 14, 2010 at 8:13 PM

This is gonna make a wonderful opportunity for whatever candidate at the next Presidential debate.

Limerick on November 14, 2010 at 8:14 PM

Why not simply make everyone exempt? You don’t have to repeal the law if it doesn’t apply to anyone.

Fred 2 on November 14, 2010 at 7:55 PM

Yes, it has to be repealed. The basic problem is that it grants an unelected Secretary far too many unregulated powers (most items are ‘as deemed necessary’ clauses).

I imagine the Repubs could revoke the Unions wiavers and make them pay or close up shop. That would be delicious.

orbitalair on November 14, 2010 at 8:19 PM

Home Health Care – Waivers

https://www.summitdjfs.org/das_waivers.html
=============================================

Teacher’s union campaigns for Obamacare – demands waiver so law will not apply to them

http://radioviceonline.com/teachers-union-campaigns-for-obamacare-demands-waiver-so-law-will-not-apply-to-them/

canopfor on November 14, 2010 at 8:19 PM

Waiver Renewal

http://www.dhcs.ca.gov/provgovpart/pages/waiverrenewal.aspx

canopfor on November 14, 2010 at 8:23 PM

***

You DON’T have to cover pre-existing conditions?

***

ctmom on November 14, 2010 at 7:40 PM

If they aren’t required to do so, those with P-E conditions can join the overwhelming number of, oh, about 8,000 who have signed up for whatever Obamacare provides them. And for those relative few Obama and the Dems turned healthcare upside down to empty its pockets–and ours.

BuckeyeSam on November 14, 2010 at 8:37 PM

OT:

Battle Stations!

The Narcissist-in-Chief has returned from his trip and is back in the White House.

IrishEi on November 14, 2010 at 8:40 PM

OT:

Battle Stations!

The Narcissist-in-Chief has returned from his trip and is back in the White House.

IrishEi on November 14, 2010 at 8:40 PM


video welcome home.

ted c on November 14, 2010 at 8:46 PM

The day American journalism decided to look the other way while Congress passed a law it had not read, from which it had exempted itself, over the protests of hundreds of thousands of citizens, was the day I knew without question that journalism is a profession of cheap whores.
Watchdog, you can kiss my ass.
drunyan8315 on November 14, 2010 at 7:43 PM

Cheap Whores make take offense at that comparison.

Chip on November 14, 2010 at 8:46 PM

Crony health care, or fascism at its best.

Dhuka on November 14, 2010 at 8:47 PM

111 arrows just delivered to Sarah Palin with one special tipped one (New England Healthcare Inst) included.

Hit the target Sarah!

journeyintothewhirlwind on November 14, 2010 at 8:49 PM

Obama learned the hard way that few people will follow a “Do as I say, not as I do” model of leadership

Just send a note with a sizable donation to the DNC – I’m sure they’ll process that for you quickly.

Midas on November 14, 2010 at 8:59 PM

Enjoyed the thread..getting ready to watch Sara Palin Alaska for some reality and inspiration.

I am not a racist on November 14, 2010 at 9:00 PM

IrishEi on November 14, 2010 at 8:40 PM

video welcome home.

ted c on November 14, 2010 at 8:46 PM

ted c:
——-

Mission Un-Accomplished,Catostrophic Mission Failure!

canopfor on November 14, 2010 at 9:11 PM

OT:

Battle Stations!

The Narcissist-in-Chief has returned from his trip and is back in the White House.

IrishEi on November 14, 2010 at 8:40 PM

Oh great. Now I am going to be blamed again for wrecking the car.

Electrongod on November 14, 2010 at 9:17 PM

Have Boehner’s people contacted Sebelius’s people to schedule a hearing yet? She should be ready the first week in January IMHO.

txmomof6 on November 14, 2010 at 9:40 PM

Have Boehner’s people contacted Sebelius’s people to schedule a hearing yet? She should be ready the first week in January IMHO.

txmomof6 on November 14, 2010 at 9:40 PM

Sebelius and Holder should be spending 40+ hours a week in hearings for the next 2 years… Zero need to call anyone else…

phreshone on November 14, 2010 at 10:39 PM

Seriously, is there anyone in this administration who knows what they’re doing?

SECDEF Gates… He’s a holdover… That’s why…

Khun Joe on November 14, 2010 at 11:55 PM

Here are my results from a minor Excel exercise on the 111 0-Care waivers (data at http://www.hhs.gov/ociio/regulations/approved_applications_for_waiver.html ) and some follow-up Binging:
.
.
There are a total of 1,175,411 “Enrollees”
.
Selected data from the table:
Selected Insurance Companies
Aetna ———————————— 209,423
American Fidelity ———————- 9,358
Assurant Health (2nd Application) – 19,024
BCS Insurance ————————— 115,000
CIGNA ———————————– 265,000
Total ———————————– 617,872 … 52.56%
.
Selected Unions
Local 25 SEIU ————————— 31,000
Service Employees Benefit Fund —– 1,297
UABT ————————————- 17,347
UFCW (total of 4 entries) ————– 6642
UFT Welfare Fund ———————– 351,000
Total ——————————— 407,286 … 34.6%
.
Total ——————————— 1,025,158 … 87%
.
These 5 insurance companies and 5 “Union” entries represent 87% of the “enrollees”:
.
–> 10% account for 87%.
.
– “Service Employees Benefit Fund” looks SEIU related.
– UABT looks like “The United Agricultural Benefit Trust”; Union or Insurance ?
– UFCW looks like “The United Food and Commercial Workers International Union”.
– UFT Welfare Fund: part of “The United Federation of Teachers”?
.
Some of the “enrollee” numbers look like the entire permanant staff, other look like only executives, and maybe senior managers, decreasing down to favorites … some of the very small enrollments look this way too.
.
Why are “Funds” listed? Perhaps an attempt to put certain accounts “off limits”, maybe even elegible for deduction of pre-0-Care monies (which might stay off-limits)?
.
.
Some things look odd:
.
1. Is “Medical Card Systems”, 6,635 enrollees, the Puerto Rico-based company that offers a large variety of corporate health plans? Does a Puerto Rico-based company need to be exempted from 0-Care?
.
.
2. Is “New England Health Care” really NEHI? Or, from http://www.manta.com/c/mthnpz0/new-england-health-care ,”New England Health Care”, 7454 enrollees, “is a private company categorized under Labor Organizations and located in New Haven, CT. Current estimates show this company has an annual revenue of unknown and employs a staff of approximately 10 to 19.”
.
But “… a staff of approximately 10 to 19″ is not 7454. Still, it comes up on the search.
.
.
3. From www. darden .com: Darden Restaurants, 34,000 “own and operate 1,800 restaurants, employ approximately 180,000 people through subsidiaries”: Red Lobster, Olive Garden, LongHorn Steakhouse, The Capital Grille, Bahama Breeze and Seasons 52.
.
I calculate an 18.888% enrollment; is this all corporate executives down to selected/most restaurant managers?
.
This makes sense in a way, as the rest of the staff is likely short-term; a couple of years, then something better. OTOH, the obvious higher costs of 0-Care are going to hurt … people who already make little.
.
.
4. The number of sub-100 enrollments is interesting.
Selected ones:
– 65 Denny’s : Is the THE Denny’s? 65 seems a very small number
– 59 UFCW Maximus Local 455 : only 59 members in Local 455?
– 52 Advanta : Is this, by any chance, Advanta Bank Corp, seized on March 19, 2010 by Utah state regulators?
If so, why did they apply for an exemption?
.
5. Another question:
– Is “I.U.P.A.T”, 875 enrollees, The International Union of Painters and Allied Trades (IUPAT), with about 140,000 members? Check www. iupat .org .
.

Arbalest on November 15, 2010 at 12:17 AM

O/T…Barack Obama and Kathleen Sebelius wow the crowds with their pat-a-cake skills.

Dopenstrange on November 15, 2010 at 12:59 AM

So how many waivers does it take to make a health care system fair?

Lily on November 15, 2010 at 1:23 AM

You guys are lame. I bought an Obamacare waiver at a garage sale.

sybilll on November 15, 2010 at 1:39 AM

Keep your eyes on the news next week, as I’m fairly sure that the heads of some immigration reform lobbying groups will be deported.

Fat chance.

AZCoyote on November 15, 2010 at 5:46 AM

almost a bigger question not raised yet……..who asked for waivers and didnt receive them?

sbark on November 14, 2010 at 7:53 PM

I’ve been wondering the same thing. Has anyone who applied for a waiver been refused? If so, on what grounds? I swear that there is a huge 14th Amendment issue looming over this whole thing.

ss396 on November 15, 2010 at 6:54 AM

Maybe congress could just issue a blanket waiver for the entire country and work on a real plan.

petunia on November 14, 2010 at 7:25 PM

Defund and Repeal! Or… just get us all a blanket waiver.

Fallon on November 15, 2010 at 8:39 AM

Do we know that New England Health Care (or “New England Healthcare Institute – known as NEHI”) actually supported Obamacare?

Ira on November 15, 2010 at 9:10 AM

There was a movie years ago about the “Mouse That Roared”. A hilarious spoof on how the US enriches it’s defeated enemies. Obama has brought another spoof to life (inept government) in real time with this Health Care for all that he now picks and chooses who is in and who is out. This is the first time in my life that I have feared being included in something that was said to be soooo good.

Herb on November 15, 2010 at 9:14 AM

What constituents a waiver…a %50,000 donation?

right2bright on November 15, 2010 at 9:32 AM

Sure it’s not… NEHCEU New England Health Care Employees Union?

mankai on November 15, 2010 at 9:33 AM

Applications for waivers from annual limit requirements are reviewed on a case by case basis by Department officials who look at a series of factors including whether or not a premium increase is large or if a significant number of enrollees would lose access to their current plan because the coverage would not be offered in the absence of a waiver.

Classic… the bill to “control costs” would cost too much to implement.

mankai on November 15, 2010 at 9:40 AM

I wonder where Obamacare gives teh president the power to grant waivers?

joeindc44 on November 15, 2010 at 11:32 AM

Why not simply make everyone exempt? You don’t have to repeal the law if it doesn’t apply to anyone.

Fred 2 on November 14, 2010 at 7:55 PM

Well this is a great idea!!! Obviously the law, as written, allows the executive to grant waivers to whoever they want. Which means the next president (or this one, if you really wanna jump to fantasyland) could give a blanket waiver to the entire country.

For extra points, make sure that blanket waiver doesn’t apply to illegal aliens! Now THERE’s a nice way to turn the tables.

runawayyyy on November 15, 2010 at 6:13 PM