With the administration’s deadline to fix the Obamacare website less than a week away, one question is bound to weigh heavily on the debate over the system: How well does it have to operate to be considered “fixed”?
The truth is, the system is getting stronger as it recovers from its disastrous launch, but experts say it still has a long way to go. The problems that continue to plague it could continue the torrent of criticism, making it tougher for the administration to rehabilitate the image of its signature law.
“There won’t be a success until the website is working,” said Bob Laszewski, a health care consultant who works closely with insurers.
Nov. 30 will mark the administration’s self-imposed deadline to have HealthCare.gov working, as well as the end of the second full month of enrollment. And expectations for both of those milestones are modest.
Insurers say they’ve seen enrollment pick up in November as the administration made gradual improvements to the site, which serves 36 states. HealthCare.gov processed a paltry 25,000 sign-ups in October, but insurers say the process has gained steam over the course of this month.