The Dog That Didn’t Bark

The deadline the Obama Administration placed on itself for getting the 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 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 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.

2 comments… add one
  • jan Link

    Surprise, surprise! The government gave itself a smiley face! Not!

    What would have been a surprise is if the government gave themselves a sub-par grade. Supposedly, the site’s security, doesn’t even meet minimal levels, even though the response time and smoothness has improved over how it functioned during the initial roll-out. Also, the demographics of sign-ups remain unclear, with no set numbers. However, I’ve heard what has been submitted comprise lopsided ratios — something like 200,000 signing up for the HC exchanges versus 800,000 seeking free insurance through medicaid programs.

  • jan Link

    This Invester’s Business Daily piece straightens out some of the dem kinks, asserting the R’s do nothing but obstruct in addressing HC problems.

    One of the first things Republicans did after taking control of the House was to repeal an onerous tax-reporting scheme Democrats tucked into the law, which would have buried businesses in IRS paperwork. Obama signed that in April 2011.

    They also removed a “free-choice voucher” program that would have forced companies to hand vouchers to low-income workers who didn’t want to sign up with their health plans.

    Republicans repealed ObamaCare’s long-term care insurance program, too, which even the administration admitted was fatally flawed.

    They fixed an eligibility formula that would have let a couple making as much as $64,000 a year qualify for Medicaid, thereby saving taxpayers $13 billion.

    Just this month, the House passed a bill to let individuals keep the plans they have. That, like many other House fixes, went nowhere in the Democratic Senate.

    IBD also addressed claims how the PPACA has already lowered HC costs:

    The latest report from the chief actuary of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services — the official scorekeeper of health spending — says the spending growth slowdown is “unrelated to the (Affordable Care Act).”

    It also reports that ObamaCare will add to national spending over the next decade. Other reports have pinned much of the slowdown on the recession and Obama’s lousy recovery that followed it. Plus, ObamaCare is now pushing premiums up.

    There is lots of (un)rosiness about the PPACA summarily dismissed by the dems, in an urgency to get this awkward, ineffective program permanently embedded into their long-term dreams of creating a great society of beneficiaries/beholders to an all-powerful government.

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