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Email exchanges were revealed by Republican investigators with the House of Representatives Energy and Commerce Committee

The federal government's health insurance marketplace -- HealthCare.gov -- has seen a load of technical issues since launch, and a new report suggests that a federal official saw it coming.

According to a report from Reuters, HealthCare.gov project manager Henry Chao sent an email out about the site's main contractor, CGI Federal, on July 16. The email is being seen as an early warning that the October 1 launch of HealthCare.gov might not go so well.

"I just need to feel more confident they are not going to crash the plane at take-off," Chao said in the email.

Email exchanges between Chao (who is deputy chief information officer at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS)) and other CMS officials during the month of July discussed many issues with the HealthCare.gov site long before launch, such as staff shortages, problems with contractors and software issues.

However, a day after the July 16 email was sent, Chao told a House Oversight and Government Reform subcommittee that HealthCare.gov would be ready on time. It's not clear why Chao changed his tune in front of the subcommittee. 

Chao even emailed a video July 20 to CMS officials about his promise for an October 1 launch to the subcommittee.


"I wanted to share this with you so you can see and hear that both Marilyn and I under oath stated we are going to make October 1," Chao wrote in the email, which contained the video. "I would like you (to) put yourself in my shoes standing before Congress, which in essence is standing before the American public, and know that you speak the tongue of not necessarily just past truths but the truth that you will make happen."

But the HealthCare.gov website crashed shortly after its October 1 launch, and has encountered various technical problems ever since. 

CGI Federal blamed another contractor's software and ultimately the federal government on October 23 for the website's terrible performance. 

Republican investigators with the House of Representatives Energy and Commerce Committee unveiled the emails in a recent investigation of the HealthCare.gov troubles. 

Last month, Verizon's Terremark -- which hosts HealthCare.gov and allows uninsured Americans to both search and buy health insurance -- lost network connectivity after a technical failure. The glitch also threw off a data services hub that connects a number of federal agencies and is used to verify people's identity, citizenship, etc. This verification is necessary to check if people are eligible for tax credits that cut the cost of monthly insurance premiums.

Shortly after, Microsoft offered its help with HealthCare.gov's technical issues. The House Oversight Committee sent letters to others as well, such as Kayak and Verizon, looking for help.

President Barack Obama has called the website glitches "unacceptable." 

Source: Reuters



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This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled

By venym76 on 11/15/2013 1:01:02 PM , Rating: 5
Oh, I think it is pretty clear he received "guidance" from his superiors on how to "handle" the subcommittee.




republicans
By Samus on 11/15/13, Rating: -1
RE: republicans
By tnicks on 11/15/2013 4:30:09 PM , Rating: 4
lolwat? How would the shutdown after October 1st have corrected the failure to develop HealthCare.gov over the course of 4 years? Keep in mind, they were working overtime on HealthCare.gov, while the shutdown was occurring.


RE: republicans
By KCjoker on 11/15/2013 6:25:33 PM , Rating: 5
Uh, you're watching why the Republicans fought so hard to repel ObamacareTAX with the shutdown. You really think the Gov't that can't even get a website to work after 3 years and hundreds of millions of dollars can handle our healthcare? lol


RE: republicans
By Piiman on 11/16/2013 11:37:38 AM , Rating: 2
The Government isn't handling our Healthcare the Insurance companies still are.


RE: republicans
By kamiller422 on 11/18/2013 1:34:16 PM , Rating: 2
LOL! Good one! Oh wait... you were serious? So dictating what services they must and must not offer, the amount of compensation to doctors, etc doesn't affect healthcare service at all?


RE: republicans
By superstition on 11/17/2013 12:31:33 AM , Rating: 4
The "Republicans" (just one of the two brand names of our singular 1% party) "fought" to maintain the illusion of partisanship for divide and conquer purposes.

Notice how they let Obamacare come to a vote just before Christmas Eve at 8 AM when they thought the fewest people would pay attention.

Everyone with an ounce of political knowledge knew the GOP would not block Obamacare. Virtually the same 1% "donors" fund both parties' candidates for the presidency and in other races. Matt Taibbi documented that, showing that McCain and Obama had practically the same "donor" list in 2008.

The sham was exposed, not just by the unexplained GOP allowance of a vote right before Christmas, but even more clearly by this combination:

1. Obama's secret meeting -- which happened months before he maintained that he wanted a public option -- promising no debate on single payer and the elimination of the public option was leaked.

2. The Democrats actually whipped against the twitching skeletal remains of the public option, after they had, with the GOP's help, whittled it down to ridiculous form. All of their lies were clearly exposed at that point.

Then, of course, we have John Roberts -- a "conservative" -- who put the final puzzle piece in place -- the real point of Obamacare -- which was the "mandate" -- the clever method of forcing the citizenry to bankroll the bribes. Forcing the citizenry to buy private companies' stuff includes bankrolling the lobbying, doncha know. It's money on a lovely loop. "Lobbyists" bribe politicians to get people to be forced to pay for their lobbying, which not only pays off the lobbying money already used but which helps to make it possible to use even more company money for lobbying.

Anyone who is selling the belief that we have two parties that lock horns out of a real difference in ideology and representation is either very naive or is one of those who profit from the illusion.

The Democrats’ scam becomes more transparent
www.salon.com/2010/03/12/democrats_36/


RE: republicans
By papabear38 on 11/18/2013 5:20:33 PM , Rating: 2
**** We have a WINNER ****

+6


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