ObamaCare site to go offline for more repairs

Healthcare.gov, the primary website to enroll in health insurance through ObamaCare, will be taken offline again Monday night for improvements, following weekend work designed to fix major technical problems.

The site will be offline beginning at 1 a.m. in order to improve its capacity and make software changes, the Health and Human Services Department said.

HHS said the site had improved as a result of work done over the weekend. The site was taken offline during nonpeak hours to address widespread technical errors that prevented users from creating accounts, a step required before they can compare insurance plans.

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"The work done to increase access to HealthCare.gov in light of the overwhelming demand is beginning to show results," HHS spokeswoman Joanne Peters said.

HHS has said the primary problem with healthcare.gov has been the unexpectedly heavy traffic to the site. It received roughly 8.6 million visits in the first week of its launch, overwhelming its servers.

But some technical experts say the site's problems are also structural, and HHS acknowledged Monday that its changes are not limited to adding more capacity.

The fixes scheduled to begin at 1 a.m. Tuesday include software changes and moving part of the system to a new type of hardware, HHS said.

"Our work to expand the site’s capacity has led to more people successfully applying for and enrolling in affordable health coverage online, with wait times being shortened by approximately 50 percent since Friday," Peters said. "But we won’t stop until the doors to HealthCare.gov are wide open, and at the end of the six-month open enrollment, millions of Americans gain affordable coverage.”

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