ObamaCare Processing Center Whistleblower Says Workers Being Paid to Stare at Computer Screens

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A whistleblower alleges that employees at a Wentzville, Missouri ObamaCare processing center are being paid to sit at their computers.

The processing center is operated by Serco, which is owned by a British firm that was awarded a $1.2 billion contract that included the hiring of 1,500 workers to handle paper applications for ObamaCare enrollees, according to The Washington Post. “Their goals are set to process two applications per month and some people are not even able to do that,” a whistleblower told KMOV-TV.

The whistleblower also told KMOV-TV that weeks may go by with data entry workers never receiving any applications to process. According to the KMOX-TV report, the employees apparently spend their days just looking at their computers. “They’re told to sit at their computers and hit the refresh button every 10 minutes, no more than every 10 minutes,” the whistleblower said. “They’re monitored, to hopefully look for an application,” FoxNews reported.

The whistleblower accused Serco of trying to hide the lack of work while continuing to hire staff for processing centers located Missouri, Kentucky, and Oklahoma, wrote FoxNews. According to the whistleblower, Serco receives compensation for every worker it brings on.

The Centers for Medicaid and Medicare services told KMOV-TV in a statement that “Serco is committed to making sure federal funds are spent appropriately, and the number of Serco staff is reviewed on a regular basis.”

Meanwhile, in 2013, the British government investigated Serco’s parent company, Serco Group, for alleged overbilling of the government by “tens of millions of pounds” under a contract meant to monitor offenders on parole and those released on bail, according to The Washington Post.

Then-Medicare spokesman Brian Cook said at the time the contract was awarded that, “Serco is a highly skilled company that has a proven track record in providing cost-effective services to numerous other federal agencies.” He added, “The company has provided exceptional records management and processing support to other federal agencies, similar to work they will do for the marketplace,” according to FoxNews.

The Washington Post indicated that 90 percent of Serco’s business is with the federal government. Serco’s head of Media Relations, Alan Hill, told The Washington Post that, “We have 8,000 workers across 45 states…. Since the beginning of our existence, we’ve worked heavily with the federal government.”

Serco, wrote The Washington Post, does not have broad health care experience and this contract is its first health law contract under the Affordable Care Act. Serco also maintains a number of government agency contracts to process applications. “This contract has a lot to do with records management, processing applications and that kind of work,” Hill said. “We do a lot of that work for other agencies, like processing visas. We do that work in New Hampshire and Kentucky.