Healthcare.gov, fresh from the November 30 relaunch, was not free of problems on its first live business day on Monday, according to those monitoring the site closely.
A surge in interest followed by a large number of visitors caused the site to force thousands of shoppers to be put on hold as it apparently couldn’t handle the large number of visitors at once.
On Saturday, November 30, the self imposed deadline to have a newly revamped Healthcare.gov for people to buy insurance coverage in the Obamacare exchanges, the Obama administration announced that it had met the deadline to implement fixes that would make the website function more efficiently.
The October 1 launch of Obamacare, was a disastrous endeavor, with fewer than 100 people able to register for insurance on the first day.
At the time, the White House, through the Department of Health and Human Services, blamed the glitches on the high volume of visitors the administration said were flocking to Healthcare.gov, however, it was later determined that the problems were due to software and hardware shortcomings.
On Monday Julie Bataille, a spokeswoman for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, which is operating the troubled Healthcare.gov acknowledged there are still problems, even though the Obama administration claimed victory following the new fixes.
“Demand today has been high. We do know that things are not perfect with the site.” Bataille said.
According to the Los Angeles Times Bataille said about 375,000 visitors went to the site before noon, about double the normal traffic for a Monday morning. The volume caused pages to load slowly and the rate of errors to increase sharply.
At around 10 am ET, a new alert system directed some people to return to the site lately, when traffic is not so heavy.
On Sunday Jeff Zients, the administration official overseeing repairs to the system, said on a conference call with reporters:
“We’ve doubled the system’s capacity and HealthCare.gov can now support its intended volume.”
Zients added the Obamacare site can now handle 50,000 visitors at one time and up to 800,000 users on any given day, The Inquisitr reported.
The latest updates posted on the Healthcare.gov Twitter account say things are more stable.
http://t.co/1MVLQtMu72 high volume – 750k visitors as of 5:30pm, no queuing now, site fast w/ low error rate.
— HealthCare.gov (@HealthCareGov) December 2, 2013
1 million visits to http://t.co/vQ74UBBs7F yesterday. Site stable, faster for users.
— HealthCare.gov (@HealthCareGov) December 3, 2013
After the initial, less than smooth launch, Healthcare.gov is working better for consumers, however, problems still remain on the provider side.
Insurers complain they are not receiving accurate data or are missing data from customers that have enrolled in the exchanges.
Bataille said Monday that officials believe they have fixed one of the main software bugs responsible for errors in the transmission of this data, but didn’t go into details as to what the percent of accurate data sent to insurers is.
The White House is starting an aggressive campaign to sell Obamacare now that Healthcare.gov is working more efficiently.