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Hundreds of Improvements

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Wednesday, November 27, 2013

As part of our ongoing efforts to make improvements to HealthCare.gov, we continue to focus on the need to build capacity and fix software bugs.

Increasing capacity has largely been a function of enhancing the hardware side of HealthCare.gov so that it is reliable, scalable and recoverable. To do this, we have added server capacity, improved database functionality, and swapped out directory components.

Software fixes have also been an important part of our work. Our development and testing teams, working 24 hours a day, seven days a week, have made hundreds of improvements to system software on both the front-end, which faces consumers, and the back-end, which helps the site operate efficiently. Just last night, we implemented another round of software fixes.

As a result, there are now improvements that:

·        Make it easier for agents-brokers to find applications for consumers.

·        Made the user interface more intuitive for consumers by:

o   Improving display of “Plan Results”

o   Properly display spouse or domestic partner information

o   Allowing consumer to more flexibly enter tax information in the system.

All these fixes have greatly enhanced the ability of consumers to use the site to shop for and enroll in health plans that meet their needs. The site is better today than it was on Oct. 1.  We are on track to meet our goal of having the site work for the vast majority of users by the end of the month. To be clear, Nov. 30 does not represent a “re-launch” of the site. It is not a magical date.  There will be times after Nov. 30 when the site, like any web site, does not perform optimally. And work will continue after Nov. 30 to make further improvements.

Because of the numerous upgrades in software and hardware over the last month, on Dec. 1, HealthCare.gov will be able to handle approximately 50,000 users at the same time and more than 800,000 users a day. However, if there are extraordinarily high spikes in traffic, which exceed the site’s capacity, consumers will be put in a new advanced queuing system that allows them to be notified via email when they can return at a later time. If the site does experience high spikes in volume, as we saw in the first few days of October, we will recommend that consumers consider visiting the site during off-peak hours in the mornings, evenings or on weekends. 

Again, we are seeing improvements week over week with lower error rates and faster response times. Our work will continue so that every American who wants it, can access and enroll in affordable, high quality health coverage.


This post is no longer accepting comments. If you want to learn more about the Affordable Care Act, please visithhs.gov/healthcare. If you have question about or need assistance with health insurance enrollment, please visithttps://www.healthcare.gov/contact-us/.

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Submitted by LIsa on
same old same old. Still stuck in same loop since the middle of Nov. Where's the improvements. I don't see it. The site runs slower than the first time I signed up. Same questions asked over and over with the same answers to spend 20 minutes to end up at the same spot with system down. Da... it fix it already. The best country in the world not only doesn't have health care for every one, they come up with a sloppy piece meal keep profit in health insurance and the worse website to signup. Enough already. We are talking about people's health. How many people will not be with insurance for the first time come Jan 1 due to this program? How many people will have huge bills they can't pay because a sudden illness happens during that time without insurance? How many people who use insurance because they have an ongoing illness will not get medical help because their insurance has lapsed. Fix it so people who did what you told them to do... sign up..... in Oct and Nov are able to get through the application after trying dozens and dozens of times.
Submitted by Mike on
Well, I have followed the advice to set up new acct/email/etc. I have 4 accounts. One is still stuck in waiting for identity verification. One is stuck, never lets me out of my family info. (I have answered the question of whether I am Native American or Alaskan Native well over 100 times. I still am not, and the site still bombs. I have one id that bombs after I answer the tobacco usage question. It sets us up for ZERO groups (I need 2), then goes back to the enrollment todo list. Conveniently deleting my wife from the app. I CAN apply for coverage after that; she cannot. The most promising id/app lets me get into the group question, but consistently bombs when I try to create a second group. Everyone says the site should allow my wife and I to be in 2 different groups, with different plans. But the site fails every time. I have been waiting nearly 4 weeks for a call-back from the ARC. Promised to be in 2-5 business days. All lies. I have spent well over 100 hours trying to finish this process. As an IT professional, I can say that this site is still a disaster. Not ready for real use. Epic Fail.
Submitted by John on
The one issue for me is I simply can't create a new account. It gives me a pretty generic error message: Important: Your account can not be created at this time. This is using new username, new email etc. It suggests that someone is using my email already, which is impossible unless there really are major security issues with the website. In case it is creating the account but giving the error anyways I tried resetting my password which also didn't work, nothing shows up in my email. PLEASE, can these folks just use a login form from ANY OTHER WEBSITE? I signed up for my twitter / google and other accounts in seconds. Those sites gave me instant feedback on username and other selections. This website waits until I have entered all my stupid security questions to tell me someone is using my email already from 2 pages before. And then we have to ask, is the error message even right? Is someone using my email? It seems impossible but we are supposed to trust this system? SO ANNOYING!
Submitted by Raymond on
I don't know what you are talking about. I still can't sign up for any plan. The whole system is nothing but JUNK!
Submitted by Stephen on
I will take the penalty. This site is a failure.
Submitted by Robert on
I realized I made a mistake in the information that I provided when completing the application. However, there isn't a way for me to go back and change that information. Seems like something they should have thought of and fixed. Now that my application is completed (incorrectly) I can't apply for coverage. Uggggg.
Submitted by Abhishek on
Does not work! Identity Verification is still broken. I can't locate my Reference Number anywhere on the website that Experian needs. It shows I have a notice available for identity verification but its nowhere on the website. This website is still a Trillion Dollar Joke on OBAMA. Change we believe in!
Submitted by Ellen on
I can't find a reference number either. I have excellent credit, so I don't know why Experian is having a problem identifying me. Help!
Submitted by Oesd on
HELP This site doesn't work for me
Submitted by Tea Lovers on
Julie, thank you for your hard work. Looking forward to a great system, even if it is for regressive States and there backwards populations.
Submitted by roosevelt louis on
I fill the aplliction six week I am not receive no message
Submitted by Rod on
It doesn't work. At 12:18 I tried to access it and asked for assistance. Never got it and finally got a message the system is down for maintenance. Seriously. This is a failure. No 2 ways about it. A failure.
Submitted by Nomad on
Are you really serious that after your 100+ "improvements", the portal will be able to handle "50,000" concurrent users?? Who in the right mind would plan to develop a website, to be used by 36 states and have capability to ONLY handle 50,000 users at a time? In other words you are saying that each State of over 2 million population could not even have 2000 people logged on to the website at the same time!! Pathetic!
Submitted by Alan on
Glynis is right. I've been stuck on "ID verification pending" since Oct 5. It took me less than 45 minutes to create a new account and complete an application on Chrome instead of Firefox. But now I have a new issue. The number of plans I see in the enrollment section varies between 13 to 16 simply by viewing with different browsers. My gripe is that the plan I want wasn't listed (along with dozens of other plans that should be available in my area.) I still may end up going direct to the insurer and skip the marketplace. Speaking of the plans, the comparison shopping page was definitely not worth a seven week wait. But at least the plan brochure link is with each plan desription.
Submitted by Glynis on
I'd recommend deleting cookies, temporary internet files, and history, logout of the site, then restart your browser and login again. You should do that any time you see blank pages, error messages, or something doesn't look right. As to available plans, the insurers aren't necessarily offering every plan the have on the Marketplace. And not all insurers are offering plans on the Marketplace.
Submitted by Alan on
Thanks for the suggestions. However, the plan enrollment page now shows all the plans I expected (12-1-13) without doing anything but waiting 2 days for more fixes. My first clue was when I logged in Saturday, the enrollment page showed me a few more plans than it had on Friday. By Sunday night all the plans I expected were being shown. So yes, my problem was in fact a bug in the system, that at the moment appears to be fixed.
Submitted by Anne on
I enrolled today for a faimily plan and was very happy! Actually did it off my iPhone! Couldn't believe how easy it was and the choice of policies were great! I feel very luck and proud of my country for doing the right thing. But I thought affordable health care would be available to all US citizens. Why are my friends and family living in the US Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico not covered by the ACA? This is very unfair and further classifies those living in US territories as 2nd class citizens. The US govt can do better on behalf of it's citizens
Submitted by George on
First, Thanks to Glynis for posting replies and tips. Since it seems that the keepers of this blog are not responding, it is good to see folks like Glynis stepping up and doing that. I am not a techie, and since I have employer based coverage I have stayed off of the website, but maybe if there was a group of "Glynises" out there they could begin responding to the "it doesn't work" posts and walking the legitimate solution-seekers through the sign-up process, that might help those in need and provide evidence that simple solutions like starting fresh actually work.
Submitted by Anonymous on
Submitted by Anonymous on
Throw this out... suck up the cost.. throw out the President and find one that finds our nations problems more important than million dollar vacations and golf... Lets also find one that doesn't help terrorists...
Submitted by James Wimberley on
Ms Bataille: instead of posting essentially the same bland press release every few days. why not try a different approach that takes your readers here a bit more seriously? Take us through just one fix in more detail: what the problem was, who dealt with it and how, and what the fix should do.
Submitted by Robert on
Why do you care as long as it works.
Submitted by Doug on
Earlier you spoke specifically about progress on the 600-item "puchlist." As of last week you had fixed 250 and were going to repair a further 50 last weekend. Did you fix the 50? Where are you now on the task list?
Submitted by Glynis on
People who are stuck at various points who created an account in Oct or early Nov should create a new account with a new username, new password, and a different email address. Many comments here confirm that this works. Delete your cookies, temporary internet files, and history first. Make sure your browser and java plugin are up to date. Chrome browser seems to be working best for most people. Whenever you get stuck you should delete your cookies, logout, restart your browser, and login again. For tips and tricks on how to complete the application and enroll in a plan and help troubleshooting the common problems being posted here, Google: "my obamacare success story: It was worth the wait!"
Submitted by Anonymous on
this is not working to much cost