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On the Hill: Congress Unveils Omnibus, House Continues to Target healthcare.gov

House and Senate leaders unveiled an omnibus bill this week that will fund the government through September. They expect to bring the bill to the floor later this week. In most cases, the bill funds health care–related provisions below fiscal year 2013 enacted levels, but above sequestration levels. The bill includes provisions to fund the Affordable Care Act (ACA), but does not provide additional funding for ACA implementation. Although the current continuing resolution (CR) funding the government is set to expire Wednesday, Congress will vote on a stopgap CR to ensure continuity of funding and provide the extra time necessary to pass the omnibus.

House committees will hold three separate hearings Thursday on healthcare.gov. The Energy and Commerce Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee will hear from Gary Cohen, director of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) Center for Consumer Information and Insurance Oversight on the problems concerning the site launch. The Committee on Science, Space, and Technology will focus on the consequences of stolen identities, and the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform will focus on the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ (HHS’) site-related concerns, though no witnesses have been announced for the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.

The House is set to vote on a bill later this week that requires HHS to produce weekly reports on healthcare.gov, including data on enrollment numbers, site visits, and error rates by state. The vote was postponed last week.

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