Back in October when HealthCare.gov launched and then promptly became an enormous shit show, the Obama administration imposed December 1st as their deadline for getting the site's act together. And today's the day! So how's stuff going?
In a press call, Jeff Zients (former acting director of the Office of Management and Budget who was put in charge of HealthCare.gov's makeover) told reporters that, "HealthCare.gov on December 1 is night and day from where it was on October 1 . . . We've widened the system's on-ramp. It now has four lanes instead of one or two."
A progress report embargoed until this morning echoes the idea that the deadline has been met:
The newly installed technical monitoring instruments have allowed for constant real-time analysis of site performance. With this new data and management structure the team has the capacity to rapidly respond to any incidents and to better understand root causes.
The report says that uptime is over 90 percent now, page response time is down below a second, and the error rate for timeouts and failures is below 1 percent (it was above 6 percent a few weeks ago). Now the site can deal with 800,000 users per day or 50,000 at a time, but peak traffic is still more than that so a new notification system will warn people when site traffic is too high and will send reminders when they can return.
Of course, the White House would say that their goals for December 1st have been met, so we'll have to wait and see how the site is actually performing in practice over the next few weeks. And even if things have improved, the debate about the Affordable Care Act is far from over. But hopefully the teams of programmers working on HealthCare.gov can at least get a few hours of sunlight and some Thanksgiving leftovers. [VentureBeat, CNBC, CNN]