Over a week after Obamacare kicked in, the HealthCare.gov computer system is still blocking insurance applicants due to major glitches and traffic, prompting a live chat room host on the government’s website to suggest that it would be best to “wait a few days.”
Secrets attempted again on Wednesday to enter the system but within two minutes a red line crossed the computer screen reading: “Important. Your account couldnt be created at this time. The system is unavailable.” The world “couldnt” did not have an apostrophe.
To determine what to do, Secrets entered the HealthCare.gov chatroom. The hostess, “Alicia,” was prompt and direct, eventually describing the system as overwhelmed and suggested we apply later.
[4:03:29 pm]: Thanks for contacting Health Insurance Marketplace Live Chat. Please wait while we connect you to someone who can help.
[4:03:32 pm]: Please be patient while we're helping other people.
[4:05:03 pm]: Please be patient while we're helping other people.
[4:06:14 pm]: Welcome! You're now connected to Health Insurance Marketplace Live Chat.
Thanks for contacting us. My name is Alicia. To protect your privacy, please don't provide any personal information, like Social Security Number, or any other sensitive medical or personal information.
[4:07:07 pm]: Alicia
Thank you for calling the Health Insurance Marketplace. How may I help you?
[4:07:19 pm]: CALLER
is there a problem with the system or what I put in?
[4:07:34 pm]: CALLER
I can't seem to get in...is there a system problem or is it what I entered?
[4:08:59 pm]: Alicia
We have a lot of visitors trying to use our website right now. That is causing some glitches for some people trying to create accounts or log in. Keep trying, and thanks for your patience. You might have better success during off-peak hours, like later at night or early in the morning. We'll continue working to improve the site so you can get covered!
[4:10:08 pm]: CALLER
Ok, so I should get off and just try later. Do you think that will work, or should I wait until next week or something?
[4:11:11 pm]: Alicia
That is up to you, I would wait awhile and keep trying. If not wait a few days. Is there anything else I can help you with?
[4:11:39 pm]: CALLER
thanx, good luck
[4:12:22 pm]: Alicia
Thank you for calling the Health Insurance Marketplace Call Center. Have a great day!
[4:18:19 pm]: 'Alicia' has left the chat session.
[4:18:21 pm]: Your chat session is over. Thanks for contacting us, and we hope we've answered your questions. Have a great day.Paul Bedard, The Washington Examiner's "Washington Secrets" columnist, can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.