Although Paul Newman and Robert Redford probably wouldn't be impressed, the Government Accountability Office pulled a PPACA sting operation that revealed flaws in the application system.

The GAO's sting didn't catch any wrongdoers. It wasn't designed for that. But investigators in the federal watchdog office did set up 10 phony insurance coverage accounts with no pushback from those overseeing the applications.

The GAO, in testimony late last week before Congress, said it set up the sting to see if the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services had plugged up holes in the application system uncovered a year ago by a GAO study.

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Dan Cook

Dan Cook is a journalist and communications consultant based in Portland, OR. During his journalism career he has been a reporter and editor for a variety of media companies, including American Lawyer Media, BusinessWeek, Newhouse Newspapers, Knight-Ridder, Time Inc., and Reuters. He specializes in health care and insurance related coverage for BenefitsPRO.