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Continued Improvements to HealthCare.gov

Monday, October 28, 2013

CMS is working through the punch list of items to improve the HealthCare.gov marketplace functionality. 

This weekend, Terremark, the company that operates the data center that hosts the HealthCare.gov website and the Data Services Hub, experienced a failure in a networking component that brought down network connectivity to the site, and other web sites as well.  We are pleased to say that Terremark resolved their outage issues last night, and as of 7:00 AM this morning, the Data Services Hub is functioning smoothly.  We continue to test one piece of the system impacted by the outage and are working as quickly as possible to allow consumers to again access the online application and enrollment tools on HealthCare.gov.

Working over the weekend with its new management structure in place the tech team has put into place fixes to address performance and functionality and will continue to make progress each week.  This nerve center for technical operations is diagnosing problems and making quick decisions with developers and vendors to analyze, troubleshoot, prioritize and resolve issues in real time.

This team has put in place enhanced monitoring and instrumentation tools for HealthCare.gov -- providing us with data that enables us to get a high level picture of what's going on in the Marketplace application and enrollment process.  We are now better able to see how quickly pages are responding, and measure how changes improve a user's experience on the site.  We’re also getting information on which parts of the application are causing the most errors--enabling us to prioritize what we fix next.

The following items were recently released into production in order to improve the user experience:

  1. We’ve tuned configurations to various system components to improve site responsiveness.  This has increased performance across the site.  As an example, viewing and filtering health plans during the online shopping process now responds in seconds, not minutes.
  2. We’ve resolved issues with how eligibility notices are presented to consumers so that those now display properly at the completion of the application process. 

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Comments

Submitted by Nick on
Where can we submit specific issues? We have some and we are not confident they are being identified. Will submit a complete report with steps to reproduce the issue (software tester). Inability to submit issues has been frustrating so far.
Submitted by Healthcare CIO on
When this happens in hospital and healthcare institutions across the country, and it does, there will soon be penalties associated with it. Please keep this event in mind when you are determining the amount of those penalties. Thank you! Healthcare CIO

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