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Weekly Wrap-Up: the Latest Fixes to HealthCare.gov & Open Enrollment by the Numbers

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Saturday, November 16, 2013

As we continue to improve HealthCare.Gov, we wanted to provide you with a wrap up of the fixes we’ve made to the site over the last week and an update on open enrollment.

Yesterday, Jeff Zients provided an update on the status of our efforts to improve HealthCare.gov. As Jeff said, we’ve made measurable progress in the last few weeks, clearing over 200 items from our punch list. This week the site was very stable. Here are a few of the major fixes:

  • We've improved response time (how fast the system responds to user’s requests) from an average of 8 seconds at launch to under one second for most users.
  • By eliminating glitches and executing bug fixes in the software, we’ve driven the error rate on pages down to under 1%.
  • To improve the user experience, we added visual cues to plan compare screens to help consumers select the best plan.

For next week, we’re prioritizing a list of 50 additional fixes and improvements. As always, we will continue to provide updates on our fixes as we have them.

While we make improvements to HealthCare.gov, Americans all over the country are shopping for coverage and enrolling in the new Marketplace.

On Wednesday, we released our most detailed report to date on our first reporting period of Open Enrollment. Between October 1 and November 2, 106,185 individuals selected plans from the Marketplace and another 975,407 applied and received an eligibility determination, but are still shopping. An additional 396,261 were assessed or determined eligible for Medicaid or the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP).

That means, in total, 502,446 Americans are positioned to have health coverage starting in 2014. As more and more Americans enroll, we’re starting to hear their stories about what getting coverage means to them:

Paul Vlosich from Uniontown Pennsylvania initially had trouble with HealthCare.gov but was persistent and eventually selected a silver plan that has a lower cost, lower deductible, and lower co-pays than his previous coverage. With tax credits, he will be paying $60 per month. Paul’s mom recently passed away from cancer. Before she passed away, Paul promised her that he’d always take care of himself and have health insurance.

Lara Imler from Anchorage switched careers in 2004, trading in her accountant’s calculator for a new career as a hairdresser. While she loves her new job, she missed the insurance benefits of her old job because they helped her treat a thyroid disorder. On October 24th, Lara gave HealthCare.gov another chance and was able to enroll in a silver plan that cost $100/month—substantially lower than the $1,200 she’d been quoted before the Marketplace.

While we’re still not where we want to be with HealthCare.gov, the site is getting better and better. As Secretary Sebelius has said, we won’t stop until every American who wants it gains access to these new options for quality, affordable care. 

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Submitted by Shirley on
I set up an account yesterday and all seemed to be going well until i got to the review part and noticed my cell phone and home phone were reversed. I tried to edit them, big mistake, should have just left it as is. Now I keep getting to a certain point and get a sorry our system is temporarily down message. I have tried deleting cookies and browser history, but the same thing keeps happening.
Submitted by A. Mathews on
I successfully completed the application and was able to enroll in an affordable insurance plan. Everything worked fine and I thought the website was well designed and intuitive. I had a question during the process and was surprised to learn there was chat and phone service available 24 hours a day. Thanks to all the people working behind the scenes on this.
Submitted by RD on
Worst site I have ever worked on!
Submitted by Patricia on
On October 15 my application was received and processed. My eligibility results have been ready to view since that date as well. I still have been unable to view these results. I get an error message every time. I have tried several times a day every day since October 15. I've tried accessing using Firefox, Google Chrome and Internet Explorer. I've deleted cookies, cleared history and allowed pop-ups......nothing works. Is this ever going to be fixed? Is this only a Pennsylvania problem? Just for the record, I have been a huge supporter of healthcare reform and have not stooped to bashing the administration on the website issues. However, it would be so appreciated to get some feedback from someone who is working on this site.
Submitted by Glynis on
If you're getting an error message it sounds like something got corrupted in your account. Try creating a new account with a new username, new password, and new email address. Delete cookies and clear history before you create the new account. Customer support isn't monitoring the blog so people are just trying to help each other with what has worked for others.
Submitted by stephen on
i have reviewed my application 6 times now and still have no access to the marketplace when will the host servers be able to meet the demands of applicants during normal hours of the day!!? this is very frustrating ...... i dont have time to apply for health insurance at 3:00 am when the servers arn't busy, i'm a student and work a full time job.
Submitted by Glynis on
If you are referring to what it says in the red banner on the "Enroll To Do List" that is just a reminder. In order to see and compare plans click on the green "Set" and that will take you to the health plans. The system is down every night from 1:00 am to 5:00 am EST.
Submitted by Donna on
Please give people the opportunity to start over on their online application. My application has been stuck for about 6 weeks now because it seems to think I'm applying for two plans. If I could just hit "RESET" and start over, it might solve a lot of problems. I am now applying by phone.
Submitted by Grant on
I'm in the same boat as many I suspect. I've made it all the way through the process... and now on my "Enroll To Do List" page... the "Review & Confirm Your Coverage" step says it's Locked. I have come back day after day trying to complete enrollment with no luck. The online tech support folks have no clue what to do. Very frustrating. I find it hard to believe this technology mess happened without some kind of nefarious interference. Just my opinion...
Submitted by Ellen on
I am still waiting for my identity to be verified. They told me that it takes 2 weeks, but I've been waiting for over a month. I feel like it's never going to happen.