Long Waits Greet Many on Healthcare.gov

By CBS News

Published 12/03 2013 04:37AM

Updated 12/03 2013 06:26AM

WASHINGTON, DC -- The White House says the new and improved Healthcare.gov website is ready for users.  But it was a rocky re-launch for the online insurance marketplace.

President Obama will talk about the benefits of the Affordable Care Act today at the White House, and will highlight the improvements made to Healthcare.gov...the troubled website that just underwent a major overhaul.

"They're really trying to say to the American people, give us another chance.  Give the website another chance," says Paige Winfield Cunningham, the health care reporter for POLITICO.

750,000 users logged on by early last night.... about double the traffic for a typical Monday.  The White House promised the re-vamped website could handle 50,000 users at a time. 

But when it reached about 35,000, a new queuing system kicked in, putting thousands of people, including June Miles-Mays into a virtual waiting room.
"It's very frustrating to me because I need insurance so badly and it seems like something in the system or something is not working," Miles-Mays says.

White House press secretary Jay Carney says the system worked... the website did not crash.
"That is why we built that queuing system, so that we would improve the experience of users who visited the site, over what they experienced back in October."

Visits to the site are expected to skyrocket as December 23 nears:  That's the deadline for Americans to buy insurance to ensure coverage at the start of the new year.

Some people had to wait in the new queuing system for hours Monday.  Emails are sent to users when the site can handle their requests.   June Miles-Mays got frustrated and ended up filing out a paper application.

(Susan McGinnis, CBS News)

Copyright 2015 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Featured Coupon


Featured Business