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Friday, October 21, 2016

Boston (AFP) – U.S. President Barack Obama said Wednesday he is “not happy” with the glitch-filled rollout out of his health reform program, as he renewed a vow to fix the problems.

“I take full responsibility for making sure it gets fixed ASAP,” Obama said at an appearance in Boston. “We’re working overtime to improve it every day.”

The online exchanges, a key element of the health care law, debuted on October 1. As part of Obamacare, nearly all Americans need to have health insurance by next year or pay a fine.

But the rollout was tarnished by the poor functionality of the website, which in the first few weeks prevented many users from enrolling in the insurance plans being offered.

“The deal is good, the prices are lower — but let’s face it, we’ve had a problem. The website hasn’t worked the way it is supposed to over these last couple of weeks,” Obama said.

“Right now the website is too slow, too many people have gotten stuck. And I’m not happy about it,” the president added.

As a consequence, he acknowledged, vast numbers of users have been unable to register and peruse the site or shop for insurance plans, a situation his Republican critics have seized on in recent weeks.

“There is no excuse for it,” he said.

Obama came to Massachusetts largely to shine a spotlight on the state-wide health care plan, put together by his 2012 Republican presidential rival Mitt Romney.

Obama pointed to the “early problems” facing the Romney plan’s rollout in 2006.

“There were changes that had to be made. Anybody here who was involved in it can tell you that,” he said of the Massachusetts plan.

But the low enrollment numbers eventually turned around, something Obama has said he expects will happen with Obamacare as well.

“Today, there is nearly universal coverage in Massachusetts,” he said.

“Your law was the model for the the nation’s law.”

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Copyright 2013 The National Memo
  • infadelicious

    if you like your health insurance plan and your doctor, you can keep them..PERIOD!!
    UH OH………..President Obozo…..liar liar pants on fire……………PERIOD!!

    • Sand_Cat

      Those your pants blazing away in the picture?

    • highpckts

      Just maybe it’s because these people are carrying the minimal amount of insurance “just in case” and now find out it’s not up to snuff! So I guess you don’t mind paying higher premiums to cover all the ER visits these people make because their unsurance has no coverage or they just simply don’t have any insurance??

      • infadelicious

        He lied! PERIOD! He should have said “you can keep your plan IF IT’S UP TO SNUFF” He didn’t tell us that HE would be the decider of whose plan was up to snuff. He lied! PERIOD! And wlll you like paying higher premiums because obozo thinks he’ll get enough young healthy people to pay for the rest ? That will not happen and the meager fines which will probably cost more to collect will not cover it either, not that he could ever set up a system for it anyway. did I mention he LIED. PERIOD!! .Do you mind that he lied, misled, whatever you want to call it?

    • elw

      Do you honestly think this is the first time that Insurance Companies have had to cancel insurance policies because new laws have been past? During President Bush’s term in office when his Drug Program was implemented millions of Senior lost their health insurance and had to choose new ones because of the new law. Insurer’s often cancel policies and force their customers to move to others in the individual market for health insurance. A healthy insurance policy is a contract that must be renewed annually, just like car and home insurance. That means that even if they add a few benefits to the same insurance policy it has to be re-issued and signed. BTW, most employers go through the same thing and are constantly renewing or change health policies.

  • Dominick Vila

    The fact that software glitches have delayed the deployment of the ACA Federal government website is irritating, if nothing else because it could have been prevented if the HHS had received adequate funding to award the development and Beta testing of that software to the “A” Team. However, let’s not forget that people can open accounts and join the ACA exchanges by going to HHS offices in person, by calling the ACA 800 number, via mail, and by going to the MEDICAID-ACA offices in states that embraced healthcare reform.
    Regarding the latest attacks claiming the President mislead the nation when he said that people could keep their old insurance plans and doctors, I’ll start by saying that he should avoid making definitive statements like that, if nothing else, because he leaves himself wide open to sabotage. Most of the individual insurance policies that are being cancelled by insurance companies because they don’t meet minimum policy standards, were purchased after the President made his statement. His naiveté notwithstanding, none of the insurance companies have told those affected by those cancellations that they will not be able to continue to go to the same doctor. They are simply being told that the substandard insurance policies the GOP loves are going to be replaced by better policies, often for the same or lower premiums. Obviously, if someone chooses to get the Platinum option, and those whose earnings put them above subsidy limits, are likely to end up paying higher premiums if they choose the Cadillac of ACA plans.

    • Allan Richardson

      I agree, it would have been more precise to say that “you can keep it IF YOUR EMPLOYER AND/OR INSURANCE COMPANY WANTS YOU TO KEEP IT.” That last clause SHOULD go without saying, between reasonable people, but so many of us are easily led down a path of misreasoning, and a few of us are ready to do the misleading.

      • highpckts

        Yes, some companies are dropping their policies because they see this as a perfect way of paying nothing for a while! Just like putting everyone on part time to get rid of insurance.

  • Allan Richardson

    It’s a characteristic of the industry and has been for many years:

    The first 90 percent of the project takes 90 percent of the time and money.
    The last 10 percent of the project takes the OTHER 90 percent of the time and money.

    This is true for private AND government projects, but the process for procuring IT services for the federal government does need to be fixed, as pointed out last night by Chris Hayes (“All In” on MSNBC), because rules created in a well-intentioned attempt to stop corrupt and rigged bidding have made it difficult to get the highest quality people or vendors on short notice as needed. But there is another lesson from industry experience:

    Adding programmers to a late programming project makes it later.

    Or, the “man-month” is a myth. Nine women cannot produce a baby in one month.

  • CPAinNewYork

    If any reader has participated in a system conversion, especially one that involves putting some previously manual functions on computer, he or she knows that rigorous testing at all stages of development is mandatory. If testing is shortened, the chances for malfunctions are enormous. Yet, sponsors of conversions frequently push the system developers to get the system on line as soon as possible, because they want to “look good.” Then, when the systems have the inevitable problems, the sponsors try to blame the developers.

    I’m gratified to see that in this case Obama and Sibelius have stepped up to take the blame, because my experience and instincts tell me that they ARE the ones that should be blamed. There’s no doubt in my mind that they pushed the developers to put the system on line before sufficient testing had been completed

    • highpckts

      I have to agree! My son is a computer Science engineer and the testing is a MUST! With a program the size of the ACA, it’s has to be a nightmare for programers! I still think, given time, it will work as planned and prove it self!

  • neeceoooo

    I heard something the other day on NPR that puts this whole ACA issue in prospective. Let’s say you want to go to your favorite restaurant. The food is always good, the service is great and the price it easy to handle and you always say this is your favorite place. So you go up to the door and for some reason the door sticks and you can’t get in, do you think differently of your favorite restaurant? This has nothing to do with the food, the service or the cost of the meal, this will still be a great place to go and you will probably still recommend this to other people even though on one night, you couldn’t get the door open. Think about this the next time you hear FOX news trashing the Affordable Care Act.

  • infadelicious

    you can keep your health insurance plan. PERIOD

  • howa4x

    This is a tempest inn a tea pot. The Medicare part D rollout had tremendous problems and all the republicans in Congress asked for patience from the public since it was a GWB initiative. Once again the hypocrisy of the GOP is showing. If every state set up exchanges like they actually cared about their residents than none of this would have happened.