If you want to sign up for Obamacare, it is once again possible to do that on Healthcare.gov. The federal health insurance website is working after being down on Wednesday for the second time this week. But, we learned today that there are definitely hours to avoid Healthcare.gov.
Hours to Avoid Healthcare.gov
The site is down from 1 a.m. to 5 a.m. And will continue to go dark during those hours for maintenance and upgrades until the end of November. So if you’re a nightbird, you’re out of luck.
Of course, you still can sign up on the state healthcare exchange websites if your state is participating. You can also call and apply on the phone. There is a 24/7 hotline: 1-800-318-2596. Yet the failure of the site to function perfectly and the disruption to the application process is dispiriting.
Millions need affordable health insurance and Obamacare is a good way to get it. In addition, the government is spending $630 million on tech work for Healthcare.gov and it seems the huge sum should have gotten everything at least close to right in the first place.
However Julie Bataille, the spokesperson for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, is touting the new tech help that the administration recruited.
Here’s what she said about two key players, Michael Dickerson and Greg Gershman:
“Michael is a Site Reliability Engineer on leave from Google. He has expertise in diving into any layer of the tech stack, from the metal to the application code to the people that write it, in order to deliver some of the world’s most reliable online services.
“Michael is onsite working with QSSI, the general contractor, leveraging his experience stabilizing large, high throughput applications to improve Healthcare.gov‘s reliability and performance.
“Greg is a developer and entrepreneur with experience running agile development teams and creating better user experiences when interacting with government.
“Greg is working with CGI, focusing on optimizing the site to improve Healthcare.gov‘s performance, and helping the development process be more agile so Healthcare.gov can release improvements more rapidly.
“Besides these two, there are dozens of software engineers, developers, designers and analysts who are methodically working around the clock on performance and functionality of Healthcare.gov.
“And, lastly, as the general contractor, QSSI is making sure there is a coordinated approach to the punch list, and that the experts are being used as efficiently and productively as possible.”