Those looking to learn more about their health care options under the new Affordable Care Act are being asked to have patience. Since launching on October 1st, the government's newly created HealthCare.gov marketplace has continued to experience frequent downtime.
In some cases, the website has taken the unusual step of asking users to wait in a sort of virtual line, promising eventual access to the marketplace.
CBS DC reports: “It’s day two of health care reform, and we have yet to have someone successfully register on the marketplace,” said Matt Hadzick, manager of a Highmark retail insurance store in Allentown, Pa., where people could go to register for the online insurance marketplace. “The registration process is very slow, and at one point it just shuts down.”
In California, health care officials initially reported over 5 million visits to their state's enrollment site on the first day. They cited this extreme web traffic as reason for slowdowns and frequent crashes, however it later turned out that number was vastly exaggerated.
The LA Times reported that the real figure was something closer to 500,000 unique visitors.
The government website's technical issues extend to some insurance providers, as well. Though most are still holding out hope for a speedy resolution to the problems.
Billy Justice, director of sales and marketing for Vantage Health Plans based in Monroe, said Wednesday afternoon that if any customers have signed up for any of the seven products his company is selling on the marketplace, he has no way of knowing.
"We ourselves were trying to access the website, but it was busy or overloaded," Justice said. Still, he said he has faith the kinks will be resolved: "If they can send a man to the moon, I promise they can fix and exchange program to let people sign up online."