Administration to name ObamaCare CEO

The Obama administration will appoint a chief executive officer for ObamaCare's federally facilitated marketplace as part of a wider management overhaul for the law's second enrollment period.

The decision is the first major action by Sylvia BurwellSylvia Mary Mathews BurwellPrice was a disaster for HHS — Time for an administrator, not an ideologue Overnight Healthcare: GOP chairman to introduce pre-existing condition bill ObamaCare enrollment hits 11.5M for 2017 MORE as head of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and a sign that she will take cues from the private sector in her approach to leadership.

Burwell said that creating the CEO position will ease decision-making by providing a "clear, single point of contact" for the federal marketplace, which was bogged down by serious problems last fall.

The move comes two weeks after Burwell took the reins from Kathleen SebeliusKathleen SebeliusPro-dependency advocates miss the mark in attacking Kansas welfare reform Pence breaks tie to confirm Trump's pick for religious ambassador The House needs to help patients from being victimized by antiquated technology MORE, the former HHS secretary whose management skills were widely disparaged in connection with the botched rollout of

The fact that Sebelius waited more than six months after the site's failed launch to announce her resignation brought criticism that the administration was not interested in holding leaders accountable for their failures.

In a possible nod to critics, Burwell emphasized accountability on Friday as her motivation in restructuring the management of ObamaCare.

"These actions will bolster our team and further instill ongoing accountability for reaching milestones, measuring results and delivering results for the American people," Burwell said in a statement.

The leadership overhaul borrows ideas from administration allies at the Center for American Progress (CAP), an influential liberal think tank that suggested creating an ObamaCare CEO as part of a report in May.

Burwell is also creating a new chief technology officer position for the federal marketplace who is expected to oversee the ongoing efforts to build and make repairs at

The decisions are not surprising, given Burwell's reputation as a bold manager. Republican lawmakers supported her nomination, citing her experience in the private sector as a top official with the Gates and Wal-Mart Foundation.

The announcement came with one more management change: the appointment of an executive from the private sector to help coordinate operations for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS).

The official, Andy Slavitt, is well-known at CMS for his work shoring up last fall. He comes to the agency from Optum, a technology subsidiary of UnitedHealth Group that contracted with the government to build parts of the federal exchange.

“Andy’s breadth of experience throughout the healthcare sector makes him the right person for this role," said CMS Administrator Marilyn Tavenner in a statement.

"He will focus on managing day-to-day operational issues across all of our programs and be a key part of our leadership team."

Slavitt's decision to join CMS was the only personnel announcement made on Friday. The agency provided few details about its effort to recruit individuals for the new CEO and CTO roles with the federal marketplace.

Those officials, when they arrive, will immediately come under pressure to make sure that is ready for its next enrollment period.

Open season for the exchanges begins Nov. 15 and end Feb. 15, 2015, making it three months shorter than ObamaCare's first sign-up period.

The administration is riding a wave of good news for the healthcare law after achieving more than 8 million sign-ups on the exchanges and 6 million through Medicaid.

The unexpectedly positive results, which decreased the U.S. uninsured rate and blunted criticism from Republicans, followed months of turmoil for the White House as it struggled to repair

— This story was updated at 1:21 p.m.