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Obamacare online service stumbles twice on deadline day

English.news.cn   2014-04-01 05:35:08

WASHINGTON, March 31 (Xinhua) -- HealthCare.gov, the online service of U.S. federal health insurance marketplace, was closed to new customers for two different periods of time on Monday, the deadline day for sign-ups of the President Barack Obama's health care law.

The network has become very busy since a flood of last-minute applicants rushed to sign up for the health insurance before the deadline, with thousands of people at a time using the fragile system, according to the website.

People waiting to apply on the website encountered a midday shutdown primarily on capacity issues, while an early morning delay was attributed to software problems.

Shortly after noon, visitors arriving for the first time to the website began to be greeted with a screen saying, "we need you to wait here, so we can make sure there's room for you to have a good experience on our site."

The website invited them to leave email addresses so that they could be contacted when the volume lessened, although it was unclear whether that would be later Monday or after the official deadline.

The system, overwhelmed by computer problems when launched last fall, has been working much better in recent months and the website figure indicates that it was operating at full capacity on Monday.

The number of Americans signed up for health insurance through Obamacare website surpassed six million last Thursday, still one million short of the seven million goal set by the government.

Some experts also predicted that only about six million Americans would sign up before March 31 deadline, saying that the gap is due to the impact from network technical problems.

Editor: yan
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