By Katie Kerwin McCrimmon
Colorado exchange managers are spending an additional $3.5 million on an IT contract, but declined to say specifically why they needed to pen a deal with Oracle.
CGI is the primary IT contractor for Connect for Health Colorado and the state exchange has spent millions in tax dollars building a portal where Coloradans can buy health insurance.
Oracle designed the disastrous Oregon health exchange. Oregon officials are now suing Oracle, contending that Oracle workers committed fraud, racketeering and other wrongdoing.
Oracle officials did not return calls for comment on the Colorado deal.
Colorado’s exchange board met in a closed-door session on Monday morning.
Connect for Health Colorado communications consultants then sent out a press release later in the day saying the board voted to approve a new $3.5 million licensing agreement with Oracle to “correctly license for its needs and accommodate future growth.”
Exchange managers declined to say what they needed to correct and why they entered into a deal with Oracle now about 45 days before the next open enrollment season starts. They also declined to explain precisely what the IT expenditures would cover.
The contract comes at a time when the exchange must become financially self-sufficient.
Spokesman Luke Clarke also declined to say whether Connect for Health has entered into contracts with Oracle in the past and if there will be additional annual expenses beyond the $3.5 million cost.
Clarke said only that the board met in executive session because they were dealing with a contractual matter.
Connect for Health’s written statement said the licensing agreement “supports significant enhancements to Connect for Health Colorado’s information technology systems in terms of scalability, performance, stability and security.”