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President Obama Promsing Fix To Exchange Website

By Jeffrey Hess | Published 21 Oct 2013 04:20pm | comments

President Barack Obama is promising to fix the problems that are plaguing Mississippi's health insurance exchange website. MPB's Jeffrey Hess reports glitches still render the site nearly unusable since it opened three weeks ago.

Mississippi's exchange is run by the federal government and, while improving, mountains of problems have prevented many uninsured Mississippians from enrolling.

Tech experts, like Mississippi based network consultant Anthony Nocentino, say problems with popular websites are not uncommon and could have been predicted.

"Generally when a flood of people rush to a website, the general case in insufficient resources. It is not unlikle the end of the Texas A&M-Ole Miss game. When everyone tries to leave campus at the same time, everything gets jammed up," Nocentino said.

Nocentino says physical infrastructure and programming updates could be needed to make the site more reliable, which is complicated, time consuming work.

The president did not offer a time table for when it would be fully functional, but some reports indicate that as many as 5-million lines of code could need to be rewritten.

Dr. Michael Minor, who is running one of two navigator programs to enroll Mississippians, says most people he has heard from are willing to push through.

"We have people that, before it got better, were getting up in the middle of the night just to try and log on because they want coverage. I am sure that there are some people that are a little bit frustrated, but the feedback we are getting from the field people are going to perserve because they want the insurance," Minor said.

Minor says he is not frustrated yet, but that could change if the website is not fully functional by mid-November when outreach efforts hit high gear.




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