Get PJ Media on your Apple

Obamacare Marketplace Overseer Tells Congress Website ‘Has Not Lived Up to Expectations’

Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services head attributes problems to contractors who “have not met expectations"; says signups expected to be "small."

by
Bill Straub

Bio

October 29, 2013 - 1:38 pm
Page 1 of 2  Next ->   View as Single Page

WASHINGTON – The Obama administration official responsible for overseeing the development of the health insurance marketplace under the newly implemented healthcare reform law offered a public apology Tuesday for the structure’s multiple failings but insisted the system will ultimately have a positive impact on consumers.

“Unfortunately, the experience on HealthCare.gov has been frustrating for many Americans,” Marilyn Tavenner, head of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, told members of the House Ways and Means Committee. “Some have had trouble creating accounts and logging in to the site while others have received confusing error messages or had to wait for slow page loads or forms that failed to respond in a timely fashion.”

The initial consumer experience “has not lived up to the expectations of the American people and is not acceptable,” Tavenner said. “We are committed to fixing these problems as soon as possible.”

Those fixes should arrive by the end of November, she said. To this point, the system has received about 700,000 health insurance applications – half utilizing the marketplace and the remainder coming from the 14 states that opted to run their own enlistment operations. It will be several more weeks, Tavenner said, before her office is able to determine how many people actually obtained insurance, noting, however, that “we expect the initial number to be small.”

Republicans, as well as some Democrats, are recommending a one-year delay in implementation of tax penalties for those who fail to obtain health insurance by the deadline. The White House thus far remains opposed to that move.

HealthCare.gov was developed as part of the Affordable Care Act, popularly known as Obamacare, to provide residents of 36 states an opportunity to contrast and compare various health insurance options and select the one that best fits their needs. Under the $1.4 trillion healthcare reform initiative, everyone must hold insurance by March 31.

Tavenner, who has found herself under fire as a result of the rocky opening, represents the first administration official to appear before Congress to discuss the system’s ongoing problems. She maintained that the website intended to provide access to the marketplace is “fixable.” The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services has contracted with Quality Software Services Inc. to serve as general manager of the effort to fix the website. And last week President Obama chose Jeffrey Zients, his soon-to-be chief economic adviser, to provide recommendations on how to fix the issues before assuming his other responsibilities.

“The Affordable Care Act has already provided new benefits and protections to Americans with health insurance, and we are committed to improving the experience for consumers using HealthCare.gov so that Americans can easily access the quality, affordable health coverage they need,” Tavenner said. “By enlisting additional technical help, aggressively monitoring errors, testing to prevent new issues from cropping up and regularly deploying fixes to the site, we are working to ensure consumers’ interaction with HealthCare.gov is a positive one and that the Affordable Care Act fully delivers on its promise.”

Tavenner attributed the problems to private contractors who “have not met expectations.” The initial wave of consumer interest “stressed the account service, resulting in many consumers experiencing difficulty signing up, while those who were able to sign up sometimes had problems logging in.”

Comments are closed.

All Comments   (9)
All Comments   (9)
Sort: Newest Oldest Top Rated
my roomate's sister-in-law makes $74/hour on the computer. She has been fired from work for 9 months but last month her income was $17954 just working on the computer for a few hours. explanation.....WWW.Rush64.Com
50 weeks ago
50 weeks ago Link To Comment
my classmate's step-mother makes $63 an hour on the internet. She has been fired for ten months but last month her payment was $16174 just working on the internet for a few hours....>>>>>>>> http://xurl.es/3mzv7
50 weeks ago
50 weeks ago Link To Comment
I'm the last one to comment on someone's looks, but could they have found a less prepossessing individual to testify? I guess the Obamanoids figured her looks would have given critics pause. She looks like she's about to cry.
51 weeks ago
51 weeks ago Link To Comment
Y'know, if the web site had worked perfectly, the number of sign-ups might be just about the same. Remember, much of America is being coerced into using this site or otherwise buying new policies over the next year, they will have little choice. No doubt this sends a tingle down Democratic legs.
51 weeks ago
51 weeks ago Link To Comment
This website excuse of 'too much traffic' is a BS front. I think it was set up and designed to absorb and deflect the criticism of mass people signing up and finding sticker shock. Some numbers are trickling out - and like an iceberg we're only seeing the tip of the problem. When people start signing up en mass we'll really start getting an earful with people complaining of the prices.

When that happens we'll hear the democrats start clamoring for a single payer (that would be you and me via tax dollars) setup to 'really make it affordable'. The dems will get their cheering section (MSM) up to speed and start harping at the republicans for the single payer system. Just in time for 2014 elections.

Its all part of 'The Plan'. Obama and Co. know what they're doing - they simply look incompetent from our view - they ain't. They're just taking a hit now so they can get to where they really want to go down the road - single payer.

Think I'm wrong?

51 weeks ago
51 weeks ago Link To Comment
if this admin. had been serious about making 0-care actually work, I doubt it would have been turned over to moochelle's college cronies. you know, the one's still withholding, and probably drawing interest on, the $$ for the victims of hurricane sandy. no end to the scandals and the crimes being committed against the American people.

the American people need a good and thorough house cleaning, el pronto.
51 weeks ago
51 weeks ago Link To Comment
If the gov't continues to spin the "its the contractor's fault" meme, the programmers will revolt and the software will never work. Who knows, maybe they began to revolt BEFORE the website went online. An excellent example of how a lack of bipartisanship in the ruling party will backfire on you...
51 weeks ago
51 weeks ago Link To Comment
"...not lived up to expectations."
Emperor Hirohito famously said, at the end of WWII to his people, something like "...the war situation has developed not necessarily to Japan's advantage."
51 weeks ago
51 weeks ago Link To Comment
Failures are often masters of understatement.
51 weeks ago
51 weeks ago Link To Comment
View All

One Trackback to “Obamacare Marketplace Overseer Tells Congress Website ‘Has Not Lived Up to Expectations’”