Obama administration: People really are signing up with HealthCare.gov

Saturday, November 9, 2013 - 10:15pm

The Department of Health and Human Services is trying to prove that all is not lost with the so-far disastrous rollout of HealthCare.gov, insisting there are people who have found that the website worked just fine.

"The site was very easy to use," said a New Hampshire woman identified as Deborah L. in an online video touted Saturday in a new HHS blog post. The video is dated October 22.

"The site is getting better each week," the blog post said Saturday, ticking off measures the department has undertaken to fix the maligned website like hiring a management expert, adding servers to improve speed and overhauling the account registration process. The administration has vowed HealthCare.gov will be fixed by the end of November.

And the blog post offered a few examples to back up its assertions that some have found the website usable. That runs counter to the narrative of pervasive problems with Obamacare's online exchanges, which have been documented in the media and by Republicans in heated Congressional hearings.

"I enrolled in a plan on HealthCare.gov," a Florida college student named Daniel said in another HHS video dated October 21, noting that he was able to find a cheap health insurance plan online.

"Once I was on the site it was pretty easy for me to compare plans. I was able to pick a much higher quality plan."

The lion's share of the Affordable Care Act website news since the exchanges went live October 1 has been negative, with stories of people unable to log on, confused about options and, in some cases, finding plans that were more expensive than the ones they had before.

President Barack Obama has been fiercely criticized over a promise he made repeatedly that those who want to keep their insurance would be able to do so.

That promise was never going to hold true for a small percentage of the population, we now know - mostly people whose insurance did not meet the minimum standards of coverage mandated by the Affordable Care Act, better known as Obamacare.

Obama has since apologized for that promise, but the language keeps popping up.

A page on the White House website still has a sentence that reads: "If you like your plan you can keep it and you don't have to change a thing due to the health care law."

The very next sentence on the page links users to the video interview in which the President apologized for making just that promise.

Asked by CNN why the White House didn't change the "if you like it you can keep it" line on the White House web site, a White House official said, "The website gets updated all the time. The update reflects our most recent interviews and comments on the topic."


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