Tense exchange over privacy issues
Rep. Joe Barton (R-Tex.) grilled CGI’s Campbell on a warning on the Web site that information visitors entered into the system would be subject to greater disclosure than the medical forms Americans typically fill out. That information is protected under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), a privacy law.
“Are you aware this was in the source code? Do you think that’s HIPAA compliant?” Barton asked. “Admit it! You’re under oath.”
“Sir, that is CMS’s decision to make,” she replied, referring to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, the agency within the HHS that is overseeing implementation of Obamacare.
“We’re telling every American if you sign up for this, or you even attempt to sign up, you have no reasonable expectation of privacy,” Barton said. “That is a direct contradiction of HIPAA, and you know it.”
“That is a CMS call,” Campbell said. “That is not a contractor call.”
At one point Barton pressed Campbell to give her opinion on whether this is an acceptable part of the system as “an American,” which she declined to answer.
“We’ll I’ll answer,” Barton said. “ I don’t think it should be.”