The deadline the Obama Administration placed on itself for getting the Healthcare.gov web site on its feet has passed and, unsurprisingly, the administration is giving itself “a passing grade”:
WASHINGTON — The Obama administration said on Sunday that it had met its goal for improving HealthCare.gov so that the website now “will work smoothly for the vast majority of users.”
In effect, the administration gave itself a passing grade. Because of hundreds of software fixes and hardware upgrades in the past month, it said, the website — the main channel for people seeking to buy insurance under President Obama’s health care law — is now working more than 90 percent of the time, up from 40 percent during some weeks in October.
Jeffrey D. Zients, the Obama adviser leading the website repair effort, said consumers were having a much better experience now than in early October. Pages on the website load faster — in less than a second — compared with an average of eight seconds in late October, Mr. Zients said. “The site is now stable and operating at its intended capacity, with greatly improved performance,” he said.
In the end it won’t be how much effort has been put into the site, page load time, or user experience that determines the success or failure of Healthcare.gov or the healthcare insurance exchanges for which the web site is the primary portal. It will be how many people enroll in plans, their demographic makeup, and whether more people are helped than injured by the PPACA, and, ultimately, whether voters take their pleasure or displeasure to the polls. As I’ve been saying for some time, time will tell and now there’s a lot less of that than there was two months ago.