A few more updates today on the ongoing healthcare.gov website issues and what’s apparently being done to address them.

The most important of those being that the administration says the site will be in proper working order in a month, and that QSSI – which has been one of the contractors on the current website project – will serve as a general contractor in overseeing this cleanup phase. From USA Today:

The troubled HealthCare.gov website will be running properly by late November, said Jeffrey Zients, President Obama’s appointee to fix the problems that have plagued the site since its Oct. 1 opening.

“By the end of November, HealthCare.gov will work smoothly for the vast majority of users,” Zients said Friday. “The HealthCare.gov site is fixable. It will take a lot of work, and there are a lot of problems that need to be addressed.”

Zients, former acting director of the Office of Management and Budget, was called in Monday to help with the site until it is fixed. He helped with other website glitches during Obama’s first term.

QSSI, a division of UnitedHealth Group, will serve as a general contractor to oversee the effort, he said. Their existing contract for the site has been renegotiated.

Philip Klein over at Washington Examiner was on a conference call this afternoon with Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and Jeff Zients, and offers a few additional pieces of information. (This is only an excerpt of several he mentions):

— Though CMS had insisted on Thursday that the problem with bad enrollment data being sent to insurers was “isolated” (an account contradicted by insurance industry sources), Zients acknowledged it was a major issue and said it was at the top of the punch list.

– Zients said that 90 percent of users can now create an account on healthcare.gov, but only about three out of 10 can successfully complete an application.

– CMS spokeswoman Julie Bataille said that of the 700,000 people who had completed applications, about half came through healthcare.gov, which serves residents of 36 states. As she explained Thursday, completing an application merely means people who have gone through the process of determining their eligibility for federal subsidies. It does not necessarily mean they have actually picked a plan.

— In the face of repeated questioning from Sarah Kliff of the Washington Post, Bataille and Zients refused to name any individuals or companies involved in the “tech surge” meant to fix the problems. They claimed the individuals wanted to “keep their heads down” and focus on the task at hand.

By the way, I guess I’m one of those 10 percenters…


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