Obamacare woes widen as insurers get wrong data and experts say website built on ten-year-old technology will need to be constantly fixed and then totally overhauled

  • Technology experts say the flaws could do  lasting damage
  • Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen  Sebelius criticized for declining to testify before an oversight panel
  • Administration officials blame problems on an  unexpectedly high volume of 14.6 million visitors  in its first ten  days

By  Daily Mail Reporter

PUBLISHED: 13:28 EST, 18  October 2013 |  UPDATED: 13:48 EST, 18 October 2013

After weeks of a dysfunctioning website and  mass derision, the Obamacare exchange woes are only starting as some are now  giving insurers the wrong date on patients. And the trouble isn’t  over.

One technology expert claims the faulty  sites, which cost nearly $400 million to  build, were made on ten-year-old  technology that will require constant fixes and eventually the entire system  will have to be overhauled.

A technology expert said the  flaws could do lasting damage to the law if customers are deterred  from signing  up or mistakenly believe they have obtained coverage.

Welcome to the disaster: Healthcare.gov is more than three years and $394 million in the making, but few Americans have been able to make it function, leaving a trail of discouraged consumers in its wake 

Welcome to the disaster: Healthcare.gov is more  than  three years and $394 million in the making, but few Americans have  been able to  make it function, leaving a trail of discouraged consumers  in its  wake

Stern: U.S. President Barack Obama delivers remarks on the end of the U.S. government shutdown in the State Dining Room of the White House in Washington, October 17, 2013 

Stern: U.S. President Barack Obama delivers  remarks on  the end of the U.S. government shutdown in the State Dining  Room of the White  House in Washington, October 17, 2013

John Engates, chief technology officer at  Rackspace, told USA Today that recent changes have made the system  easier to use, but they still  require clearing the computer’s cache several  times, stopping a pop-up  blocker, talking to people via Web chat who suggest  waiting until the  server is not busy, opening links in new windows and clicking  on every  available possibility on a page in the hopes of not receiving an error  message.

HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius made time for Jon Stewart on Teh Daily Show, but his pointed barbs have her scrambling to avoid testifyign before Congress about the disastrous Obamacare website 

HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius made time for  Jon  Stewart on The Daily Show, but his pointed barbs have her scrambling to avoid  testifying before Congress about the disastrous Obamacare  website

The whole process takes about an hour and  should not be necessary to enroll.

Republicans chastised President Obama’s top  health adviser on Thursday for declining to testify before an oversight panel  about the problems in rolling out Obamacare.

Less than a day after Congress ended a 16-day  partial government shutdown precipitated by Republican demands to delay or  defund Obamacare, they sent a letter to Health and Human Services Secretary  Kathleen Sebelius demanding she make officials available for the October 24  hearing.

The online insurance exchanges that are a  central part of Obamacare rolled out on October 1 despite the shutdown but have  been hobbled by technical difficulties that Sebelius has said are being  fixed.

‘I will be the first to tell you that the  website launch was rockier than we wanted it to be,’ Sebelius said on Wednesday  at Cincinnati State Technical and Community College, adding that people have  until December 15 to enroll to ensure coverage beginning January 1.

Obama’s Patient Protection and Affordable  Care Act is expected to provide private health coverage to an estimated seven  million uninsured Americans through the new online marketplaces that opened for  enrollment in all 50 states on October 1.

But the website Healthcare.gov, the  administration’s online portal for consumers in 36 states, was hobbled by  technical issues – including error messages, garbled text, delays loading pages,  duplicate enrollments, spouses reported  as children, missing data fields and suspect eligibility  determinations.

Administration officials partly blame these  problems on an unexpectedly high volume of 14.6 million visitors in its first  ten days.

Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Nebraska said  it had to hire temporary  workers to contact new customers directly to resolve  inaccuracies in  submissions.

Medical Mutual of Ohio said one customer had  successfully  signed up for three of its plans.

According to a poll conducted by United  Sample Inc, the site’s problems have not  driven away potential customers.

ObamaCare  

More than a week into the glitch-littered launch of the  ObamaCare insurance ‘exchanges’, critics are decrying the roll-out as a ‘train  wreck’ that should give everyone pause about requiring individuals to use the  new system

The survey found that among the 832 people  who attempted to log in, 38 per cent received an error message, 50 per cent were  asked to try again later, 25 per cent were unable to create an account, 31 per  cent were told the system was down, and 19 per cent had no problems.

About 83 per cent said they would try again  later, while 15 per cent said they would wait until they heard the website was  working well.

About 70 per cent of those who said they had  no issues said they still waited to enroll because they want to think about  their options.

Sebelius recently appeared on the  cable-television comedy program, ‘The Daily Show with Jon Stewart’ for an  interview that focused on the website’s problems.

But HHS and the White House have largely  declined to disclose information about the problems plaguing the federal  marketplace’s information technology system, which cost nearly $400 million to  build, according to a report by the watchdog Government Accountability  Office.

‘This is wholly unacceptable. Secretary  Sebelius had time for Jon Stewart, and we expect her to have time for Congress,’  Republican Representative Fred Upton said.

Upton’s panel is one of at least three House  committees expected to hold hearings as part of a new Republican plan to attack  the healthcare reform’s weaknesses, beginning with the problem-plagued  technology behind its launch.

The oversight is expected to span the cost of  new insurance plans under the healthcare law, online security, fraud, the role  of the Internal Revenue Service and the fate of consumers who are unable to  enroll in coverage in the coming weeks, according to congressional  aides.

‘It’s not just a bumpy rollout. We’re  crossing a bridge with a warning sign that says: BRIDGE OUT,’ said Republican  Representative Tim Murphy, who chairs the House Energy and Commerce panel’s  health subcommittee and plans to hold his own hearings.

‘We’ll be trying to get people from the  administration to tell us whether they were pretending everything was OK or was  there an internal cover-up or did they just not know?’ he added.

 

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2466034/Obamacare-woes-widen-insurers-wrong-data-website-built-year-old-technology-need-constantly-fixed-totally-overhauled.html#ixzz2i9cAGf3I Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook

One thought on “Obamacare woes widen as insurers get wrong data and experts say website built on ten-year-old technology will need to be constantly fixed and then totally overhauled

  1. Pingback: My Homepage

Comments are closed.