(WASHINGTON) — Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) officials Friday said they have knocked “dozens and dozens” of items off the punch list of website woes this week and are “on track” for their end of November goal to have Healthcare.gov up and running for the vast majority of users.
Despite a week of frustrating setbacks with two related Verizon hardware failures bringing the website down for most users, CMS says they have fixed the failed hardware and have improved site response time this week. In the days after the launch, it took an average of eight seconds for a page to load across the site, but since Thursday it now takes less than 1,000 milliseconds, said Jeff Zients, who has been tasked with overseeing the site’s repair.
CMS says contractor QSSI’s top talent is firmly in place with a rigorous management structure focused on prioritizing the punch list. Four core teams are working on the project: An application and software team to address ongoing glitches, an infrastructure and hardware team focused on adding capacity and redundancies, a security team to work on protecting data and a monitoring and troubleshooting team charged with analyzing system performance and spotting problems early.
Thursday night, the teams made a batch of fixes that have increased speed and efficiency. Another round of patches is scheduled for this weekend. The key areas of focus are performance, speed and responsiveness.
When asked the cost of the additional fixes to the website, CMS continues to point to the $630 million overall figure for IT costs associated with Healthcare.gov. They also continue to cite a week-old number of 700,000 applications for coverage across both the federal and state exchanges.
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