The Disaster that is HealthCare.gov

It seems that the proverbial floodgates have been opened on the stories how much of a disaster the Healthcare.gov1 website is.2 Here are some of the stories out today:

Healthcare.gov is sending insurers wrong data, turning an automated process into a manual one:

Health insurers are now complaining that applications submitted through Healthcare.gov are deeply flawed, producing duplicate enrollments, spouses listed as children, missing required data, and more, according to The Wall Street Journal.

The error-riddled applications are forcing insurers to call applicants in order to manually fact-check the data. Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Nebraska told the Journal that it has hired temp workers to settle the inaccuracies, while Medical Mutual of Ohio said one customer was able to sign up for three plans.

What? People need accurate applications for this system? What an unrealistic set of expectations.

Why the government unpublished the source code for Healthcare.gov:

Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, the agency administering Healthcare.gov, has finally responded to a query from The Verge about the change. The code was pulled due to confusion over the difference between the two parts of the site, CMS says.

The code for the informational part of Healthcare.gov — the “frontend” of the site — was written by a Washington, D.C. startup and a small team of innovative consultants. The code for the healthcare exchange — the “backend” of Healthcare.gov — was built by more than 50 contractors and was never made public.

People were logging so many bugs related to the overall system to the frontend’s Github that the developers could not figure out which were really bugs in the frontend, so they just pulled the code. Sounds a lot easier than fixing all the bugs in the backend.

Design Firm Removes All Reference To Its Work On Obamacare From Its Website:

Just a few days ago, the site looked very different. Teal Media’s homepage featured its work on Obamacare prominently, placing a link to the firm’s work on one of the most well-known websites in America front and center. Now that link, as well as the page devoted to Teal’s work on HealthCare.gov, have been removed.

Here’s a cached version of what the homepage used to look like. And here’s a cached version of Teal’s page devoted just to its work on HealthCare.gov. That page has been deleted.

Why would they want to have that kind of an anchor tied around their necks? Of course, I would have preferred they realize what kind of disaster this whole thing was before they helped Obama get re-elected.

Tech experts: Health exchange site needs total overhaul:

“I have never seen a website — in the last five years — require you to delete the cache in an effort to resolve errors,” said Dan Schuyler, a director at Leavitt Partners, a health care group by former Health and Human Services secretary Mike Leavitt. “This is a very early Web 1.0 type of fix.”

Shocking. The same people who have economic sensibilities from the mid-90s have the same understanding of how technology works.

Administration Blows Its Credibility With Disastrous Obamacare Rollout:

The Obama administration doesn’t want to talk about Obamacare. At a press briefing on Tuesday, White House Press Secretary Jay Carney dodged questions about the ongoing failure of the law’s federally-run health insurance portal, Healthcare.gov, which after two weeks is still practically impenetrable to all but the most dedicated users. Carney refused to say when the exchange might be working, and directed reporters’ questions to the agencies in charge of the project. “Those are all questions for HHS and CMS,” he said, referring to the Department of Health and Human Services and the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

Yeah, let’s talk about that horrible Tea Party! Who cares if our signature legislation is both a complete mess in both concept and execution. I love Reason’s sub-headline: “Obamacare’s troubled launch proves the administration is both incompetent and untrustworthy.” I did not need a failed website rollout to tell me that.

With all of this mess taking place, how long before the President decides to unilaterally delay the individual mandate? I set the over / under at Thanksgiving.


  1. No link, because why would anyone want to go there? 

  2. Did anyone really expect anything less from this horrific piece of legislations?