by Barbara Nevins Taylor
More tech help is on the way for the beleaguered Obamacare website Healthcare.gov., and it’s about time. While nearly half a million people applied for health insurance under Obamacare in the past few weeks and the site had over 19 million unique visits, the process was filled with drama and frustration. Many who rushed to take advantage of the great opportunity to get affordable health carecouldn’t do basic things like create accounts or log on.
It’s an embarrassment that the Department of Health and Human Services acknowledges in a statement from spokeswoman Joanne Peters,”The initial consumer experience of HealthCare.gov has not lived up to the expectations of the American people. We are committed to doing better.”
So we’re happy to hear that HHS reached beyond its team to get tech help from outside the government. It says it’s adding “the best and the brightest” to fix the errors and improve the user experience.
They are also dumping some of the quick fixes they made in response to the huge number trying to get on the site. The virtual “waiting room” was confusing and didn’t help anyone. Tech people are working at night to get rid of the glitches and debug the system. HHS says maintenance will continue in the off-hours to trouble shoot problems.
And here’s your opportunity to shout back. They actually want you to honestly tell them about your experience on the site, or so they say. We’re told HHS wants negative and positive feedback. So go for it. You can make your comments at https://www.healthcare.gov/connect.
On a positive note, the New York Times reported about a the Kentucky Healthcare exchange called Kynect, which according to the report is functioning really well. Kentucky Governor Steven Beshear is on board in a big way urging Kentuckians to take advantage of the program and get the health insurance they need for themselves and their families. Kentucky is the only Southern state operating it’s own healthcare exchange.