This article was last updated on October 30, 2015
Factual Information On The Obamacare RFID Chip Hoax
This article has been established as a way to help alert Americans to the truth of the Obamacare Chip RFID microchip hoax. Emails and social media posts have been responsible for spreading an interpretation of a portion of the Affordable Care Act, commonly known as Obamacare that is untrue. Presumably the November elections are the impetus for these rumors, and this website is here to dispel those rumors. We are also going to clear up the confusion surrounding what is actual news, what should be considered "parody" and what are simply outright lies. (The image below is what should be considered parody. Click on any photo to enlarge it.)
What Is The Obamacare RFID Chip Rumor Exactly?
The rumor states that all Americans, under Obamacare, will be implanted with a microchip that will be linked to health records and bank accounts. The date for implantation was to be 2013. Some versions of the rumor state that the implants will be placed in the hand or the neck. Other versions claim that the microchip will contain GPS capability for tracking the individual.
Rumors began to appear as early as 2009 with the drafting of HR3200. This was the earliest version of Obamacare that didn’t pass. The emails resulting from this stated that the microchip was an insidious method for the government to control its people. The Mark of the Beast “666” was on the President’s head, and all Christians were advised that he was the Anti-Christ. I with we were kidding here, but we're not.
R3200 breaks down into detail each substratum of population, health care providers, manufacturers of health care products as well as health care challenges such as illnesses and diseases. The bill exhorted the Secretary of Health and Human Services to work with leading departments and non-governmental health care research entities to find best practices in health care, to garner data on results of these best practices, and to make public these findings. The bill is broken into parts, called divisions, detailing these instructions.
The division in which the offending legislation appears is concerned with public health and workforce development. It is subtitled thus:
TITLE I—COMMUNITY HEALTH CENTERS
Subtitle A—Primary Care Workforce
Subtitle B—Nursing Workforce
Subtitle C—Public Health Workforce
Subtitle D—Adapting Workforce to Evolving Health System Needs
TITLE III—PREVENTION AND WELLNESS
TITLE IV—QUALITY AND SURVEILLANCE
TITLE V—OTHER PROVISIONS
Subtitle A—Drug Discount for Rural and Other Hospitals
Subtitle B—School-Based Health Clinics
Subtitle C—National Medical Device Registry
It is not clear from the outline above that the offending subtitle deals with diagnostics and analysis in medical devices. It is however, described in the language of the subsection. Devices may be worn or implanted for the purpose of monitoring a health concern or disease. They are also used for learning how a health concern or disease operates under certain circumstances. Analysis of this data tells the medical community how to recognize the condition, predict its effect on the body, and how to treat it effectively.
Examples of both types are:
- Insulin regulatory devices for diabetics
- Accelerometers for Parkinson’s sufferers
- A skin-deep tattoo using wireless technology for monitoring heart, brain and muscles
- Smoking cessation patches
- Migraine headache patches
- Wearable fertility devices
Data received from these devices are covered in the bill under the appropriate privacy laws, and such data is to be gathered and analyzed for the benefit of all sufferers of health problems. Public dissemination of such information is also covered in the bill.
What Does the Subtitle In The Bill Say?
This is the exact wording of the bill, adding nothing and leaving out nothing:
13 (1) IN GENERAL.—Section 519 of the Federal
14 Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (21 U.S.C. 360i) is
16 (A) by redesignating subsection (g) as sub-
17 section (h); and
18 (B) by inserting after subsection (f) the
‘‘National Medical Device Registry
21 ‘‘(g)(1) The Secretary shall establish a national med-
22 ical device registry (in this subsection referred to as the
23 ‘registry’) to facilitate analysis of postmarket safety and
24 outcomes data on each device that—
‘‘‘‘(A) is or has been used in or on a patient; and
2 ‘‘(i) a class III device; or
3 ‘‘(ii) a class II device that is implantable,
4 life-supporting, or life-sustaining. ‘‘(2) In developing the registry, the Secretary shall,
6 in consultation with the Commissioner of Food and Drugs,
7 the Administrator of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid
8 Services, the head of the Office of the National Coordi-
9 nator for Health Information Technology, and the Sec-
10 retary of Veterans Affairs, determine the best methods
‘‘(A) including in the registry, in a manner con-
13 sistent with subsection (f), appropriate information
14 to identify each device described in paragraph (1) by
15 type, model, and serial number or other unique iden-
16 tifier; ‘‘(B) validating methods for analyzing patient
18 safety and outcomes data from multiple sources and
19 for linking such data with the information included
20 in the registry as described in subparagraph (A), in-
21 cluding, to the extent feasible, use of—
‘‘(i) data provided to the Secretary under
23 other provisions of this chapter; and
24 ‘‘(ii) information from public and private
25 sources identified under paragraph (3);
‘‘(C) integrating the activities described in this
2 subsection with—
‘‘(i) activities under paragraph (3) of sec-
4 tion 505(k) (relating to active postmarket risk
6 ‘‘(ii) activities under paragraph (4) of sec-
7 tion 505(k) (relating to advanced analysis of
8 drug safety data); and
9 ‘‘(iii) other postmarket device surveillance
10 activities of the Secretary authorized by this
11 chapter; and ‘‘(D) providing public access to the data and
13 analysis collected or developed through the registry
14 in a manner and form that protects patient privacy
15 and proprietary information and is comprehensive,
16 useful, and not misleading to patients, physicians,
17 and scientists. ‘‘(3)(A) To facilitate analyses of postmarket safety
19 and patient outcomes for devices described in paragraph
20 (1), the Secretary shall, in collaboration with public, aca-
21 demic, and private entities, develop methods to— ‘‘(i) obtain access to disparate sources of
23 patient safety and outcomes data, including—
‘‘(i) obtain access to disparate sources of
23 patient safety and outcomes data, including—
gram under title XVIII of the Social Secu-
2 rity Act or from the health systems of the
3 Department of Veterans Affairs);
‘‘(II) private sector health-related
5 electronic data (such as pharmaceutical
6 purchase data and health insurance claims
7 data); and ‘‘(III) other data as the Secretary
9 deems necessary to permit postmarket as-
10 sessment of device safety and effectiveness;
11 and ‘‘(ii) link data obtained under clause (i)
13 with information in the registry. ‘‘(B) In this paragraph, the term ‘data’ refers to in-
15 formation respecting a device described in paragraph (1),
16 including claims data, patient survey data, standardized
17 analytic files that allow for the pooling and analysis of
18 data from disparate data environments, electronic health
19 records, and any other data deemed appropriate by the
20 Secretary. ‘‘(4) Not later than 36 months after the date of the
22 enactment of this subsection, the Secretary shall promul-
23 gate regulations for establishment and operation of the
24 registry under paragraph (1). Such regulations—
‘‘(A)(i) in the case of devices that are described
2 in paragraph (1) and sold on or after the date of the
3 enactment of this subsection, shall require manufac-
4 turers of such devices to submit information to the
5 registry, including, for each such device, the type,
6 model, and serial number or, if required under sub-
7 section (f), other unique device identifier; and
‘‘(ii) in the case of devices that are described in
9 paragraph (1) and sold before such date, may re-
10 quire manufacturers of such devices to submit such
11 information to the registry, if deemed necessary by
12 the Secretary to protect the public health;
‘‘(B) shall establish procedures—
14 ‘‘(i) to permit linkage of information sub-
15 mitted pursuant to subparagraph (A) with pa-
16 tient safety and outcomes data obtained under
17 paragraph (3); and ‘‘(ii) to permit analyses of linked data;
19 ‘‘(C) may require device manufacturers to sub-
20 mit such other information as is necessary to facili-
21 tate postmarket assessments of device safety and ef-
22 fectiveness and notification of device risks;
‘‘(D) shall establish requirements for regular
24 and timely reports to the Secretary, which shall be
25 included in the registry, concerning adverse event
trends, adverse event patterns, incidence and preva-
2 lence of adverse events, and other information the
3 Secretary determines appropriate, which may include
4 data on comparative safety and outcomes trends;
5 and ‘‘(E) shall establish procedures to permit public
7 access to the information in the registry in a manner
8 and form that protects patient privacy and propri-
9 etary information and is comprehensive, useful, and
10 not misleading to patients, physicians, and sci-
Following this is the beginning dates, recommendations, budgetary notations, and so forth.
It is obvious from looking at the whole subsection that such medical devices described above are the focus of the subsection. It is also obvious that studies performed by the medical community from information obtained from the devices are to be made public, apart from privacy laws, and that such information is to be used for the public good.
It is necessary for the public to see the whole subsection. The public may then see that no nefarious reasons were behind the formulation of the subsection, and that one particular part was taken out of context. Had the public read the whole subsection, it would have been aware of the reality of the devices discussed, the organization of information about them, about their results, their registration and their manufacturers. The public would have recognized that such devices are the natural purview of national health organizations, and that this subsection is only instructions for the national health organizations.
How Did This Subsection Get Distorted Into The Obamacare RFID Myth?
The distortion began with mass emails. Anyone can buy an email list, formulate a message and send it out. Computer addresses can be hidden, so that a message can’t be traced back to the originator. It has been speculated that someone not in favor of the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare, began the scare. It has also been speculated that someone with knowledge of law used certain wording in the subsection with which to involve the public’s suspicion.
If you combine suspicion with fear, mix in a complete lack of factual information, and add a dash of Fox News coverage if you can believe it, and this is precisely how you get a baseless rumor turning into an email chain phenomenon. As near as anyone can track it down, this is the original email:
Description: Rumor / Forwarded email
Circulating since: 2009 (various versions)
Status: False (see details below)
Email contributed by Sherry F., Feb. 11, 2013:
Micro Chip Implant Coming March 23, 2013
The New Health Care (Obama care) law H.R. 3590 Also HR 4872 requires all US citizens to… have the RIFD implanted
This evil plan is being launched by America. its a micro chip injected in your hand. it will contain all your personal data heath and bank accounts etc. its also a GPS device being monitored. they can deactivate it at any time if they find you suspicious or not loyal to their government or go against them or their system and you will lose everything you ever had. soon this device will be made common just like they did credit cards, turning paper money into digital money. means nothing is physically in your hand. it will be made a must for every citizen with time according to their plan and then they will spread it outside America so they can monitor and control as many people as they can and turn them into slaves with their digital technologies.
This device is the future or slavery
BEWARE of this EVIL DEVICE. If you don’t believe me do your own research before you come to argue or debate.
Warn more people create this awareness do more research on your own and save yourself from this NEW DEVILRY.
Notice a couple things? In 2009, when Obamacare originated, HR3590 and HR4872 hadn’t been considered yet. These were added as time went on. Also notice that the term RFID, which means radio-frequency identification, has never once been mentioned anywhere at all. Notice, too, that GPS has never been mentioned in any version of the bill. The rest of the email is pure fiction. Note the use of words designed to inspire unease: suspicious, monitored, control, slavery. Whomever devised the email knew which buttons to push, didn’t they?
How Did The Obamacare RFID Chip Get So Widely Spread?
Spoofing is the fine art of making fun of something, but using as its basis a fact about the something being made fun of. Satire is defined as the use of irony, exaggeration or ridicule to expose the stupidity or vices of someone or something, usually in connection with politics or related issues.
Let’s take spoofing first. In a widely circulated article, a “reporter” checked in with Hanna, Wyoming to see how citizens liked their RFID implants. Said one interviewee, “I buy groceries and clothing from my favorite stores with it. I don’t know how we existed without these things”. National Report and The Onion are “fake news” entities, whose websites look so much like a legitimate news site that people are often confused. The “news” stories are told with such straight faces, that it isn’t until readers get to the end that they realize they’ve been had. Unfortunately, readers did not remember this in connection with the implant scare.
Now let’s deal with satire. No one will argue that this particular political issue is worthy of irony. Think about it. The practical considerations are worth a chuckle. For instance, there are upwards of 380 million people, both legal and illegal, in this country. It would take the armies of several nations to capture and implant everyone. Every publication from News Biscuit to Parody Report has written a satirical piece about the implant. The trouble is that there are more spoof “news” sources than legitimate ones. Maybe that’s why people believe the RFID story, because they simply don't bother fact checking their news sources.
One individual who seems to be profiting from spreading this rumor is Paul Begley. He's a evangelical pastor who seems to believe that President Obama is the Anti-Christ or at least that is what he tells anyone who is willing to listen to his rants on YouTube. Last year he self published a "book" about the Obamacare RFID Chip and President Obama and his conspiracy theory of him being the Anti-Christ.
We use the term "book" loosely here, not because of the subject matter, but more specifically because we have a hard time classifying a printed publication with approximately 20 pages and lots of pictures and illustrations as a "book". After all there are standards in mainstream publishing for ones work to be considered a book.
Here's the problem that we have with Mr. Begley and his use of this rumor to make money. You see Mr. Begley is very careful within his website where he sells his numerous "books", to make sure to clearly note that this book in particular is "fiction". Isn't that interesting? Mr. Begley, who thanks to the more than one million YouTube views of his rant about the impending mandatory Obamacare CHIP that will be forced underneath the skin of every American, he is classifying his book as fiction. Which just in case you sometimes confuse fiction with non-fiction, which happens, fiction means that something is made up.
Whoa, talk about a smoking gun that really hurts the "legitimacy" of the Obamacare Chip rumor. Another point that we feel we should disclose about Mr. Begley, is that at one point, when his conspiratorial videos were receiving the most views, he had announced a date at which point the "mandatory RFID chip implants" would go into effect. That date has long come and gone, and now it seems that Mr. Begley has extended the timeline of when this officially goes into effect. According to his updated YouTube video channel, the effective date is anywhere between 3/23/2013 until 12/31/2017. How he came up with this date rage is beyond us, but it certainly gives him enough time to cash in from his "book" sales before he's definitively proven wrong all by himself, again.
If the company we keep is any real indication of how much you should trust someone at their word, we do not think that is going to help Paul Begley out either. A large number of the supportive comments within his YouTube videos on the subject matter are similar to the one below. How someone finds a correlation between a birthmark and an RFID chip, well that is beyond us as well!
What’s Up with Walmart? Is Walmart Really Involved With The Obamacare Chip?
Snopes, the entity that runs down rumors and reports on their veracity or falsity, snagged a rumor in 2003 that Walmart was considering the use of radio frequency tags on its merchandise. While it is true that WalMart once considered RFID the future of inventory management, it was in way no ever intended to be used as what has been claimed within this hoax. The public needs to understand a few things about mega-merchandise stores like Walmart and Target before they panic. Think about how many thousands of square feet are in a store like Walmart. Every square foot is jammed with merchandise. That stuff has to be accounted for, or prices will rise due to breakage and spoilage. Any method of tracking merchandise controls inventory, which keeps prices as low as possible.
Now multiply that fact by the thousands of stores across the country in an enterprise like Walmart. Trucks arrive three to four times per week to stock the shelves. Just as fast as merchandise walks out of the store, it comes right back in. If there isn’t a reliable inventory system available to keep track of all that stuff, Walmart would go out of business.
The purpose of the RFID chips was to track the merchandise from warehouse to store. If Walmart sold 80 coffee pots per week, they would need 90 on the next truck, because they always have returns that need replacements. The chip would alert the store to the nearest truck arrival with their coffee pots on it. Customers would not leave in a huff and patronize Target for their coffee pots. They would know they could return tomorrow for their coffee pot. Now, this is a simplistic relation of the matter, but it’s important to understand how it works.
Remember that in 2003 when this idea first occurred, no one had drafted a national health bill. Radio frequency chips were available, but the general public didn’t even know what they were. However, in 2009 when the Obamacare rumors first started, someone Googled RFID chips. Guess what they found. Now someone had “evidence” to back up their assertion that Obamacare’s chip would actually work, because, hey, if Walmart does it, so can anyone.
The truth of the matter is that Walmart discontinued consideration of the chip on a massive scale for one main reason, economics. They were never interested in tracking consumers, RFID chips were simply going to be used to track inventory within their stores.
Has Anyone Spoofed Walmart?
Indeed they have. The usual suspects that spoofed the Obamacare implant have not restricted their wit to just the health care bill. Catch phrases like “brave new world” and “Orwellian future” combined with suspicion-inducing descriptions of the proposed Solo Health Station have convinced people that Walmart shares the Mark of the Beast with President Obama.
The truth is that Walmart, in conjunction with other health care facilities like pharmacies and clinics, considered installing monitors for blood pressure, weight and vision. Look for yourself inside a pharmacy like Walgreens. Located in the area of the pharmacy is usually a blood pressure cuff, and there may even be a scale for testing weight. These usually require a quarter to work. Why shouldn’t Walmart offer the same monitoring equipment their pharmaceutical sisters offer?
Walmart is considering offering healthcare services, primarily health insurance. In recent years they have been experimenting working with partner companies within the auto insurance industry. Walmart is simply trying to find more ways to bring the average consumer within their store more often and for longer periods of time. Regardless if they start selling health insurance and offering urgent care services, similarly to what CVS does with its Minute Clinics, it is all about keeping consumers in the door and in love with the Walmart brand.
A Word About The Word CHIP (C-H-I-P)
An unfortunate contributor to the RFID hoax is a legitimate organization for the betterment of children’s health. The Children’s Health Insurance Program was developed for the benefit of children whose access to affordable health care was denied for one of several reasons. The program ensures children receive health care despite income regulations.
Since the division in which the offending subsection appears is concerned with the health of any and all people, this program was included. The acronym just seemed to fit nicely into the wording of the hoax email. Oddly enough, many programs, and not just health programs, use the same acronym such as:
- Clearing House Interbank Payment System
- Chemical Hazards Information Profile
- Call History Information Processing System
- Classified Hydrographic Information Processing System
For that matter, why didn’t they take it one step further and include in the hoax email the Quality and Surveillance portion of the bill as agents of provocation? Tracking people is, after all, what the whole thing was about. Why not use some pertinent acronyms like:
- National Electronic Disease Surveillance System
- Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System
- Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System
Sound frightening, don’t they? These systems sound far more insidious than a simple children’s health care system. The public should begin to see just how sloppily the hoax was devised. A few well-chosen words here, an acronym there, a technology no one had ever heard of before; put it all together with a little ad-libbing and a few Bible verses and you have people afraid of their own shadows.
What About The Other Drafts Of The Affordable Care Act?
Glad you asked. The official version of the bill can be read here. The bill is entitled HR3590. The public will see that the bill in no way, shape or form implies or states the description of medical devices being used for their information value. There are, however, some confusing aspects of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.
Obamacare includes 47 tax provisions to be administered through 2018. Administered by whom? The IRS. Because there are tax credits involved in obtaining health care coverage, the national tax collector is being instructed to administer health care tax credits for health care exchanges. The IRS also administers tax credits to small businesses as an impetus to offer health care benefits to their employees. The IRS is also taxed, if you’ll pardon the pun, with upholding the penalty payment for not having insurance. Upon filing taxes, everyone must show that they have insurance, or be penalized. Another of the IRS’ tasks is to fund low-income families in their search for affordable health care.
One of the biggest frustrations with the 2014 open enrollment periods, and one that caused much laughter, was the inability of Healthcare.gov to allow people to sign up. Postponements of the law have happened several times, while work was done on the site to allow sign-ups. Postponed also was a waiver enabling those whose existing insurance plans were cancelled by the deadline of Obamacare compliance to be covered by insurance. This issue should not happen in 2015 considering all the time, care and money that has been spent since the end of the 2014 open enrollment period to improve the system and process.
Co-ops, government-subsidized long term insurance packages, health care vouchers and some tax programs have been cancelled in order that Obamacare be enacted. This has caused some confusion for those who were to be beneficiaries of such programs. The ACA did replace these types of programs with general subsidies and tax credits for people that were eligible for the financial help.
It will be noticed that the implementation of Obamacare is scheduled to be complete by 2020. That gives the government another five years in which to iron out the wrinkles, fix the bugs and get the whole thing to smooth sailing status. The confusions listed above will be reworked until they work. Seniors, low-income families and under-served children will, by that time, be covered satisfactorily. As it stands now, multiple departments oversee the plan, and that makes for a certain amount of stumbling initially. As time goes on and the wrinkles get ironed out, the departments’ jobs will become easier.
So What is the Truth Of The "Obamacare CHIP" Rumor?
The truth is that before Obamacare, there was no system of checks and balances in the insurance and health care industries. For example, a patient with a pre-existing medical condition such as asthma or diabetes could not obtain health insurance. If an insurance company didn’t want to pay for an expensive treatment, it could drop the patient with no questions asked. Insurance companies could charge exorbitant rates, and no one could fight it. Because not everyone could afford insurance, the health care industry lost a lot of money. They were forced to treat people, whether or not they could afford such treatment. Malpractice insurance rates rose steeply, leaving dedicated physicians with no other choice than to turn away patients who could not pay.
The object of Obamacare was to force the insurance industry to set and abide by affordable prices for even the lowest of income families. The spending in the health care industry has long been a cause for concern. Obamacare has put a stop to all that. Over 45 million persons in America are uninsured, or they were until Obamacare went into effect. States now have the means to establish a health care market, more commonly called exchanges, in which low-income families may obtain free to low-cost health care insurance.
Some of the more desirable applications of Obamacare include:
- Allowing children up to age 26 to remain on their parents’ health insurance
- Employers may no longer pay the penalty and deny employees health insurance
- Gender discrimination is a thing of the past
- Reforming Medicare for millions of seniors unable to afford it
- Getting children covered no matter their financial situation
The truth is that Obamacare is the checks and balances. Money formerly misspent in the insurance and health care industries may now be used to pay for insurance for everyone. Think about it. It has long made the news that people were dying because they couldn’t afford to go to a doctor, couldn’t afford their medications as well as having to choose between those they could afford and eating.
The truth is that some of the websites covering the implant rumor bemoan the morals and lack of conscience of the perpetrator(s) of the hoax. The truth is it has nothing to do with morals or conscience. Someone chose to pit the public against the reform in hopes the public would destroy the reform. That someone chose the way it was done was cold and calculating, not a matter of morals or conscience.
In the beginning, the disclaimer read that we wanted to put an end to the RFID rumor. In support of that statement, the public was shown the wording of the offending passage, the bill that actually made it into law, and supporting evidence of its falsity. We encourage people to look for themselves, think for themselves, ask questions, get answers and make an informed decision of their own, not being swayed by those who would use misinformation to obtain their own ends. We hope we have dispelled the rumors to your satisfaction.